You know when paint is wet and when it is dry, but you can’t see drying taking place. Hearing loss is similar. Those affected usually don’t notice it until communication becomes a significant struggle.

However, family, friends, and co-workers often recognize the problem well ahead of time and then struggle to figure out how to help individuals with hearing loss get the help they need.

We’ve put together some tips to assist the family, friends, and co-workers of Atlanta area residents with a hearing loss to help their loved ones start their journey to better hearing.

Educate Yourself About Hearing Loss and Hearing Care

The stigmas and myths surrounding hearing loss, hearing care, and hearing aids are what complicate the process of helping your loved ones get the help they need.

By educating yourself, you will be better able to respond to the misunderstandings and misconceptions your loved one has regarding the condition, assessment, and treatment options.

With more information, you will be able to respond to objections rationally rather than emotionally.

 

Patience and Compassion Are Essential

An individual experiencing a hearing loss might lash out at you as you try to offer them a solution, but you can never respond in kind if you want to help them.

Along with being well informed, a patient and compassionate attitude is an essential part of your overall strategy, which should include:

  • Having an honest, informed discussion about hearing concerns instead of a heat of the moment outburst.
  • Encouraging a no-obligation consultation with an audiologist to have their questions answered
  • Pointing out that better hearing allows them to be more active and independent instead of relying on others to interpret or translate information
  • Being ready to go along with them and undergo your own screening
  • Raising their awareness that untreated hearing loss increases the risk for more serious health problems.

Be a Confidant and Advocate

A person struggling with their hearing tends to feel damaged and inadequate. The demanding, accusative manner often used to confront their problem strips away their dignity and makes them even more resistant.

Being a confidant and advocate communicates your compassion for the person while addressing the problem. Instead of trying to get them to submit to your way of thinking, become someone in whom they can confide.

Attempt to understand their fears and reservations rather than shooting them down by walking along with them until they are ready to take the next step.

Use Available Community Resources

Local health fairs often include hearing assessments along with other healthcare screenings. Use the less threatening environment of a health fair to get your hearing tested together.

Knowing your loved one’s primary physician or another healthcare provider can provide you with an opportunity to recruit them as additional advocates for a hearing assessment. Also, the testimonies of trusted family and friends who have benefited from hearing care can provide a good boost of encouragement. 

Audiology On Call Provides the Support You Need

Professional hearing care has the potential to impact the quality of life of your loved one significantly, so your desire to help is a noble one.

The in-home service provided by Audiology On Call provides some major advantages for encouraging your loved ones to get the help they need.

Besides, we are eager to provide support, tips, and advice to help family, friends, and co-workers educate themselves and apply the most effective strategies to encourage loved ones with a hearing loss.

Atlanta area residents can contact us for additional support or schedule a no-obligation consultation to answer your loved one’s questions and concerns.

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Kelli Smith, Au.D.

Dr. Smith earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Science and Disorders from the University of Montevallo in 1991, graduating with Cum Laude honors. She received her Master’s Degree in Audiology in 1993 from the University of South Carolina and completed her clinical Doctorate of Audiology degree (Au.D.) from Arizona School of Health Sciences in 2005. Dr. Smith is licensed by the State of Georgia as an Audiologist. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology (AAA), the Academy of Doctors of Audiology (ADA), and the Georgia Academy of Audiology (GAA), where she served on the Board as a regional representative from 2004-2007, Chair of Publications from 2004-2008, and webmaster from 2005-2011. In 2012, Dr. Smith was awarded Honors of the Association for outstanding service to GAA.