Football games with Ted are the worst. He has the volume cranked up so loud the walls shake, and you definitely can’t pay attention to the game. All you notice is the thunder of the crowd hammering against your body, punctuated by the ear-shattering staccato of the commentator’s play-by-play calls.
It isn’t at all enjoyable. But for Ted, it’s a normal volume. He needs the TV to be extremely loud so he can hear it, which makes it pretty obvious he needs a hearing aid. You’re just not certain how to talk to him that. It should be a straightforward conversation, but he seems excessively sensitive about the topic.
The following are a few recommendations that could help.
Recommend a Basic Exam
Ted has to find out more about his hearing from an expert. He may not trust other people when they inform him he needs a hearing aid. In that situation, the strategy will be convincing Ted (or anybody like him) to come see us.
One of the following tactics may help you do that:
- Suggest that both of you go together for back-to-back screenings. This is a helpful way to broach a new medical situation. You might discover that you also have some level of hearing loss (it may depend on how long you’ve been subjected to a high-volume noise).
- Try making him feel more comfortable by letting him know that it’s just a simple assessment. In the vast majority of cases, hearing screenings are quick and easy. His hearing will be categorized by frequency on an audiogram. We can explain what the results indicate.
Chat About Hearing Loss Behaviors
Hearing loss occurs slowly, often advancing so slowly it’s not noticeable. Certain subconscious behaviors often develop when this occurs. By concentrating your discussion on those behaviors, you can subtly (or not so subtly) hint that Ted (or someone like him) needs a hearing aid.
Try something like the following:
- You could tell him the family has observed he’s been having a difficult time hearing. Maybe that’s why fewer people are going to his house to watch the Big Game each year, they have a difficult time coping with the loud television.
- Point out that you’ve observed how frequently you’re “translating” for him. Here’s a hypothetical example: somebody is talking to Ted but you’re closer and Ted needs you to keep repeating what was said because he can’t understand them.
- Remind Him that he’s not talking on the phone as much as he used to because he has a difficult time hearing what his friends are saying on the other end.
The goal during these discussions is to keep your discussion centered on these behaviors instead of the disorder. Instead of discussing how Ted is experiencing hearing loss, mention how his hearing loss effects people in his life.
Talk About Hearing Aid Technology
Antiquated notions of how a hearing aid affects your appearance and what hearing aids do, in some circumstances, results in reluctance to use one. It may not be a bad idea to emphasize the innovative technology employed by modern hearing aids.
The following are some examples:
- Some hearing aids can even monitor your health and fitness biometrics and translate them in real time as well as other additional features.
- Modern hearing aids have an immense amount of technology. Thanks to connectivity, for example, your hearing aids will pair easily with your phone or even your TV speakers. This delivers amplified volumes without noise or feedback.
- Usually, modern hearing aids are so small you can’t even notice them. That’s not all, modern hearing aids are exceptionally comfortable for the wearer. They aren’t the big and cumbersome units of the past. They won’t even be seen by most people.
For many individuals, hearing aids feel like an extension of their smartphones or tablets. In this modern world, hearing aids are extremely practical and will help you enjoy activities such as live streaming.
Promote The Long-Term Benefits
Finally, take the time to point out the link between hearing loss and mental health decline. To put it bluntly, hearing is critical to a person’s cognitive health.
The sooner you manage your hearing loss, the more hearing you’re likely to keep in the long run. When you have hearing loss, your ears have a difficult time processing specific wavelengths and hearing aids are calibrated to fill in those missing frequencies. Simply turning your television volume up is no substitute for this valuable technology.
Understanding that your hearing can be preserved by getting treatment when you first observe signs of hearing impairment will help people like Ted feel comfortable getting the help they need.