Tips for managing social occasions for people with a hearing loss

  1. Try to arrive early and check out the room. Hearing aids don’t like echo, so acoustically anywhere with hard surfaces is bad news – the best environment would have carpets, curtains and soft furnishings.
  2. If it’s a sit-down occasion, ask the host/hostess not to put you next to someone who speaks very quietly! If you have better hearing on one side than the other, let them know. Also, when you take your seat, do mention to your neighbours that you have a hearing loss and you are not being rude if you don’t respond when they speak. You’ll be surprised how many people say they do too!
  3. Try to avoid poorly-lit areas. If you keep your back to the light it will be on the face of the person you are speaking to which will help with lipreading.
  4. If you wear a hearing aid with a directional programme, switch it on. This focuses on the speech of the person in front of you and cuts out background noise. Also, if you have a volume control turn it down – everyone will be shouting over the noise anyway!
  5. In restaurants ask for a quiet table, away from music sources and the kitchen.
  6. The concentration required in noisy situations is very tiring, so take breaks somewhere quiet if you can. Enjoy your food – don’t try to eat, speak and listen at the same time!
  7. Lastly – make a New Year’s resolution to join a lipreading class!

Judy Perry offers classes in Lipreading and Managing Hearing Loss in Wendover on Fridays. Next term starts January 8th. Contact for further details or call or text 07837 993923