Experiencing hearing loss can be a distressing time for both children and adults. Many people don’t recognize the signs of hearing loss right away, and as such, it can go overlooked for longer than it should. Not being able to hear as well as you expect to can impact many areas of your life.
How can you identify hearing loss in loved ones to get them the proper care?
Turning The Volume Up
If you suddenly find the levels on TVs or the radio, for example, have increased and they struggle to appreciate how loud it is or to hear properly at lower volumes, this can indicate some levels of hearing loss. –But if this isn’t the case, you need to get this checked out by a hearing expert who can ascertain the level of hearing damage occurring. It might be something as simple as a blocked ear or swimmers ear causing sound distortion, for which you can get over-the-counter treatments.
Harder to Communicate
Do they have trouble hearing you when they aren’t looking at you, or you aren’t talking directly to their face? Hearing loss can sometimes mean people have difficulty communicating, and when you cannot hear properly, you rely more on lip-reading to understand what is being said. If you remove your face from the equation, this can result in problems conversing or listening to others. You might need some communication tips to overcome this, but speaking to an audiologist or hearing care provider can help you identify any permanent levels of hearing loss.
If someone is struggling with hearing loss, they may become withdrawn, especially if they aren’t ready to admit they are experiencing hearing loss. This can manifest in different ways, from refusing invitations to events or dinners to becoming subdued and introverted. You may even notice behavioral changes such as increased frustrations and anger due to not being able to hear as well as they expect to.
It might seem like someone is purposely not following directions or confusing what you are saying if they cannot hear you properly. This is more likely if the hearing loss is severe and more profound or even in the early stages.
If someone can not understand what you are saying, they will be getting mixed up over what they think you are saying, leading to crossed wires. When communicating with someone easily confused, focus on how they focus on you when you speak to see if they can hear what you are saying.
If you find you are calling someone who isn’t responding, especially if you or they have their backs turned or are in another room, they might not be purposely ignorant. They just might not hear you calling them.
Before losing your patience, address them face on or at a closer distance to see if this changes anything. not all cases of ignorance are concerned with hearing loss, and this can be a behavioral trait. However, if it is out of character for them, it would be beneficial to consider that they are experiencing hearing loss of some level.