For you and the people in your life, coping with hearing loss can be difficult to adjust to. In some cases, it can even be hazardous.
What if you can’t hear a smoke detector or someone calling your name? If you have neglected hearing loss, you won’t hear those car sounds that may be signaling an approaching threat.
But the “what ifs” aren’t something you need to stress over. The first thing that somebody with untreated hearing loss needs to do is get a hearing exam. For people who wear hearing aids, we have a few recommendations to help you and your family remain safe, even when you’re not likely to be using your hearing aids.
1. Don’t go out alone
Bring somebody with healthy hearing out with you if possible. If that isn’t possible, ask people to face you when talking to you so that you will have an easier time hearing them.
2. Stay focused when you’re driving
Because you can rely on your hearing less, it’s important to decrease other distractions when driving. Pull off the road if you need to plot a route and stay away from your phone and GPS. Before you drive, if you are concerned that you may have a problem with your hearing, call us for an assessment.
Don’t feel embarrassed if you have to turn off the radio or request that passengers stop talking during more critical moments of your drive. It’s better to err on the side of caution!
3. Consider a service animal
You think of service dogs as helpful for those with visual impairment, epilepsy, or other disorders. But they can also be extremely helpful to individuals who have auditory challenges. A service dog can be trained to warn you of hazards. They can inform you when somebody is at your door.
They can assist you with your hearing issues and they are also excellent companions.
4. Have a plan
Identify what you’ll do before an emergency happens. Speak with people in your life about it. If you’re planning to go into the basement during a tornado, make sure your family knows where they’ll find you. Plan a specific location outside your house in the case of a fire.
This way, emergency workers, and your family will know where to find if something were to happen.
5. Pay extra attention to visual cues when driving
Your hearing loss has probably gotten worse over time. You might need to rely on your eyes more if you don’t routinely get your hearing aids calibrated. You might not hear sirens so watch out for flashing lights. Be extra attentive when pedestrians are nearby.
6. Let family and friends know about your limitations
Nobody wants to admit that they have hearing impairment, but people in your life need to know. They can warn you about something you might not hear so that you can go to safety. They probably won’t bother alerting you if they think you hear it too.
7. Be diligent about the maintenance of your vehicle
Your car might begin making strange sounds that your hearing loss stops you from hearing. These noises may suggest a mechanical issue with your vehicle. Your car could take serious damage and your safety might be in danger if these sounds aren’t addressed. When you bring your vehicle in for routine maintenance, ask your mechanic to give your car a general once-over.
8. Get your hearing impairment treated
If you want to stay safe, having your hearing loss treated is vital. In order to identify if you require a hearing aid, have your hearing examined annually. Don’t let pride, money, or time constraints deter you. Hearing aids today are very functional, affordable, and discreet. A hearing aid can help you remain safer in all facets of your life.