How precious is our sense of hearing – allowing us the ability to perceive the voices of our loved ones, the ocean’s roar, sweet birdsong, and the myriad of sounds that make up our days and lives. Sustaining loss to our sense of hearing can muffle voices to a mutter and rob us of our ability to easily enjoy the sounds we love. Hearing loss comes with age and may come as the result of work environment noise, loud music or disease. No matter the cause, frustration arises with the difficulties associated with hearing loss.
Hearing loss brings various difficulties.
- Loss of sensitivity—difficulty hearing soft speech
- Problems hearing high frequency consonants—difficulty understanding conversation
- Discrimination loss—difficulty understanding speech in noisy surroundings
Not all of us struggle with each of these, so we must work together when conversing.
Suggestions that can help with both sides of a conversation when one person struggles with hearing loss:
- Always face and look at the person with whom you’re speaking. Don’t look away during conversation. It’s always easier to communicate while facing and focusing on each other.
- When background noise is an issue, lessen the distance between the two of you. Sit or stand within a few feet of each other. And, if possible, lessen the level of noise. Choose a quieter time to dine out, move to a quieter place or turn off the distracting sounds of the television or radio.
- “Fill in the blanks” – if we understand the main direction of a conversation, we can usually stay involved even when we don’t hear every word. Stating the subject of discussion makes drawing conclusions from the context easier. Listening for ideas over details helps. If you must understand deeper, be sure to ask for clarification.
Enunciating each word clearly and a bit louder than usual, with emphasis on key words, allows those with hearing loss to be part of the conversation with less of a struggle. The extra effort we put into enhancing our conversation with each other is ever worth it for us all.
The professionals at Blount Hearing & Speech Services understand that each person’s hearing difficulties are unique. Contact us today for a speech and hearing evaluation and diagnosis. With advanced technology and genuine concern, our audiologist and staff will work to discover the best treatment for you. You can communicate with hearing loss. We can make it happen. Call Blount Hearing & Speech Services today at 865-982-8557 to schedule your appointment for excellence in hearing health care.