Hearing loss is one of the rare health problems that rarely get the attention it deserves, simply because of the stigma attached to it being a geriatric problem. People with hearing loss are often either unaware or in denial about their hearing impairment and can delay getting assistance with it as a result. If you know someone with hearing loss that is reluctant to seek help, learn to spread the word about hearing loss and the usefulness of hearing aids.
It is important that you have solid, well-researched information while attempting to convince someone to get hearing aids. Educate yourself about the various categories of hearing impairment and the various medical options to treat it.
Create an open, welcoming atmosphere when discussing hearing loss without targeting or cornering the person who has the hearing problem. Do not force them into taking a hearing test; instead work with them and get them to open up about their own experience of their hearing difficulties. This process can be time consuming but will eventually help the person with hearing loss come to terms with their hearing problem and can get them out of their shell.
Always remind the person with hearing loss that you are there to support them so that they can open up to you and feel safe that you will not disclose their problems to others. Take time out to make sure you have a private setting to converse with them about their hearing problems and never in a room full of people who might overhear. Let them broach the topic of hearing loss rather than imposing it upon them.
Be very patient with the person you are discussing their hearing problems with. Change is never an easy process and people may have trouble accepting that they need assistance. Work with them at their pace and make sure you let them know that you will be there to assist them and even take them to a hearing care professional when they are ready. Acceptance is the key to finding the solution to a hearing problem, so empower them to find the acceptance they need so that they can take the necessary steps towards rectifying their hearing difficulties.
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