For you and the people you love, living with hearing loss can be difficult to adjust to. It can also come with some perils.
What happens if a fire alarm is going off or somebody is shouting out your name but you can’t hear them? Car noises can warn you about hazards ahead, but if you have neglected hearing loss, you won’t be able to hear them.
Don’t stress yourself out over the “what ifs”. The first thing that somebody with neglected hearing loss should do is get a hearing assessment. Here are several tips to help keep people with hearing aids and their families safer whether or not they’re using their hearing aid.
1. Take a friend with you when you go out
If you can, bring someone with you who isn’t struggling to hear. If you have to go out by yourself, request that people come closer and look at you when they talk.
2. Stay focused when you’re driving
It’s essential to remain focused while driving because you can’t depend on your hearing as much for cues. Pull off the road if you need to plot a route and stay away from your GPS and phone. Before you drive, if you are worried that you may have a problem with your hearing, call us for an assessment.
Don’t feel ashamed if you have to turn off the radio or request that passengers stop talking during more decisive moments of your drive. It’s better to err on the side of caution!
3. Think about getting a service dog
For individuals who have loss of vision, epilepsy, or other problems, a service animal seems obvious. But they can also be very helpful to people with auditory problems. A service dog can be trained to warn you of danger. They can inform you when someone is at your door.
They can help you with your hearing issues and they are also excellent companions.
4. Have a plan
Before an emergency comes about, prepare a plan. Discuss it with others. If you plan to move into the basement during a tornado, make sure your family knows where they’ll find you. In case of a fire, choose a delegated location that you’ll be outside the house.
This way, if something were to happen and you became trapped, family and emergency workers can act rapidly to help you.
5. Pay extra attention to visual clues while driving
Your hearing loss has probably gotten worse over time. You may need to rely on your eyes more if you don’t routinely get your hearing aids calibrated. You may not hear sirens so look out for flashing lights. Be extra attentive when pedestrians are around.
6. Share your hearing trouble with friends and family
It may be tough to admit, but it’s crucial that people in your life know about your hearing loss. They can warn you about something you might not hear so that you can go to safety. They most likely won’t bother alerting you if they think you hear it too.
7. Be vigilant about the maintenance of your vehicle
As somebody living with hearing loss, you might not be able to hear unusual thumps, clicks, or screeches when you drive. These can indicate a serious issue. If dismissed, they can do long-term damage to your car or put you in danger. It’s a good idea to ask a trusted mechanic for their opinion on the condition of your vehicle when you take it in for an oil change or inspection.
8. Treat your hearing loss
This is the most important thing you can do to stay safe. In order to know if you need to get a hearing aid, have your hearing examined annually. Don’t delay because of time constraints, money, or pride. Modern hearing aids are discreet, functional, and very affordable. A hearing aid can help you remain safer in all aspects of your life.