by Jan L. Mayes, MSc, Audiologist, Member, The Quiet Coalition
A recent article in healthyhearing.com gives fantastic tips on how to make holiday get-togethers, like parties or family dinners, easier for people with hearing loss, whether they use hearing aids or not. These are also excellent tips for people with tinnitus or decreased sound tolerance like hyperacusis.
The goal is to make the social soundscape comfortable and easier for understanding conversations. Tips include communication strategies, lowering the volume of ambient music, thinking about seating arrangements, and creating a “quiet area” or refuge in the home for the person to use when needed.
The best tip is to talk to the person with hearing loss to find out their preferences and needs.
Social situations can be stressful and take a lot of listening effort. Sometimes a few easy changes can make a world of difference. Following these hearing-loss friendly tips would certainly make gatherings more enjoyable during holidays and year round.