Helping a New Hearing Aid User to Adjust

Couple in Rome adjusting to being a new hearing aid user

The day is here.  Someone you know who has trouble hearing and has finally decided to do something about their hearing loss.  Your job should be to make this experience as comfortable as possible.  It has probably been years since they’ve heard this well.  Below is a list that you can follow to help make the transient process for the new hearing aid user as.  He easy as possible.

How to Help the New Hearing Aid User

  • Do not raise your voice. It will take some practice since you’ve been raising your voice to be heard for the past few years.  If you raise your voice now, it will be too loud for the new hearing aid user.
  • Do not suggest that their first experience in the hearing world be a visit to your favorite restaurant on a Saturday night.
  • Do not “test” their hearing.  A new hearing aid user does want to compare your ability to hear to what they are hearing over and over.
  • A hearing problem rarely happens overnight.  More than likely, it was a slow, gradual decline until the issue was no longer they could ignore.  Reinforce that learning to listening (learning to ignore background noise is one example) will take some time.
  • Try to understand what it means to have a hearing loss.   Put in a set of earplugs and watch TV or try to talk on the phone to get a little idea of what they experience.
  • Avoid comedy.  Do not under any circumstances amuse yourself at the expense of someone who is hearing impaired.  A disability is not funny.
  • Ask questions.  Is there anything you can do to make their transition into the hearing world easier?  You may be surprised at their responses.  Maybe the TV is now too loud for them, or they never realized how loudly you chew your gum.  It’s also possible that you have some hearing loss too. You may have better hearing than your loved one, but that doesn’t mean your hearing is normal.

In the End

Admitting a problem exists and being willing to do something about it is a big step for anyone.  It might take them so time to adjust to hearing better, be patient and supportive.  The result will be a satisfied hew hearing aid user and friends and family who are happy they don’t have to repeat everything they say.

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