How to Survive a Family Gathering When You Have Hearing Loss

5 tips for enjoying the upcoming holiday season when your hearing is impaired

Good communication at extended family meal

Having hearing loss can sometimes make you feel left out of conversations.

It’s easy to turn down invitations to parties and events, or to withdraw from group conversations because of hearing loss, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Here are 5 tips for enjoying the upcoming holiday season:

  1. Determine who might not know about your hearing loss. Make it a point to connect with those people during the celebration. Tell them about your hearing loss and that you want to hear what they have to say. Ask them to get your attention when they want to communicate. Try using this common “drill”: “Please look at me, speak slowly and forgive me if I ask you to repeat what you said.” Have a laugh about it. They will appreciate your thoughtfulness.
  2. Check your expectations, fears and concerns at the door. It’s Thanksgiving! The whole family is here, and you want nothing more than to participate in it all. You already know that the day will not go perfectly, and you may miss a lot of the news and conversation. That said, you can always get contact information for those with whom you wish to continue communicating. Emails, texts and cell phones now afford us a variety of convenient and accessible ways to communicate – just one more thing for which to be thankful.
  3. Double, or single-sided deafness? Location, location, location. Sit in the middle of the table and try your best to hear what’s going on. Or seat yourself at a good angle to at least see everyone. If you can, have some family members who know how to communicate with you (and who won’t place extraordinary demands on your hearing) sit near you so you can have your own conversation circle.
  4. Save the day for a family member with hearing loss. Let them know you know that they are hard of hearing and offer to help them communicate with others if they need assistance. You can be their translator – stand or sit near them to help with conversations. Make a point of spending some time chatting to make them feel part of the celebration.
  5. Try using a personalized hearing amplifier. A headset from the Wear & Hear line can give you the boost you need to take an active part in holiday conversations. These devices are self-tunable, lightweight, and very comfortable. When not in use, the magnetized ear buds will hold the headset in place on your chest (like a pair of glasses). They let you be in charge of your own hearing!

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communication, conversation, hearing, thanksgiving,

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Hearing Tech Expo the largest consumer hearing health fair in the country (outside of the HLAA National Convention). The 8th annual Expo is scheduled to take place on Saturday, February 15, 2020 at the Manatee Technical Institute in Sarasota, Florida. Sarasota is one of the most hearing friendly cities in the US and the world with 120 major theaters, meeting places and houses of worship equipped with a loop system. Attendees are invited to visit the Alango - Wear & Hear booth to try and compare our personalized hearing amplification solutions. Manatee Technical Institute, Sarasota, Florida - Saturday, February 15 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

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The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) is the leading U.S. organization representing people with hearing loss. This annual convention, sponsored by HLAA in a different city every year, is an opportunity for people with hearing loss and their families to learn how to adjust to living with hearing loss, and to become acquainted with the assistance and resources available to them. Information about new legislation, trends and technologies that aid this community are presented in the conference sessions, and in the exhibits hall. Stop by our booth to try out the latest Wear & Hear assistive hearing solutions. New Orleans, Louisiana, USA - June 18-20

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