Tips for Effective Communication

Even if you have hearing aids and are happy with their performance, there are always steps you can take to make sure you hear as much out of life as possible. It's important to talk about your hearing loss with the people around you.

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These three tips will allow your loved ones to help you take a more active role in conversations:

  • Ask them to speak one at a time (especially in groups or while eating a meal) and to look at you so you can see their lips.

  • Don't pretend to understand what people say if you actually can't hear them. Ask them to repeat themselves or even to rephrase what was said. Depending on your type of hearing loss, some frequencies or sounds - such as 's', 'f', and 'ch' can be more difficult to hear. Because of this, asking people to use synonyms can be more effective than simply asking them to talk louder.

  • To facilitate conversation, turn down the volume on the TV, stay away from open windows that let street noise in, and turn off distractions like dishwashers or washing machines.

These suggestions are just a few of the many ways you can improve conversations with friends and family. Read part one in our series on communicating with people living with hearing loss.