How Can I Help To Address My Hearing Loss?

There is a common misconception that hearing aids are the "all cure" solution for all hearing loss. The reason being hearing aid are not recommended for over-the-counter purchase is because in reality, hearing aids is only a part of the process involve in a long term rehabilitative process to improve your communication.

Upon diagnose of hearing loss, it is equally important to understand your type and degree of hearing loss, to understand the impact of the hearing loss to your daily life and people surrounding you. By knowing the limitation, it helps you to set a positive mind on what to expect in the next following process and exert a set of realistic goals to achieve along the rehabilitative journey.

The first key to success start with you
The most common ultimate goal for the hearing impaired is to improve and ease their communication difficulties arising from the hearing loss. Each person may adapt different coping strategies to achieve that, thus some of the following tips may help to address your hearing loss better;

1. Accept and Acknowledge

The diagnosis of hearing loss may have shocked or caught you off guard.It is certainly fine to take some time to accept it at your own time, but most importantly you need to come to term and acknowledge its presence. With acceptance and acknowledgement, you have taken the most positive step to help yourself addressing the problem.

2. Education

This tip is to ensure that you are an informed consumer. For example, if hearing aids is recommended, Audiologist should be able to provide you necessary information from type and style of hearing aids, functions and limitation of different hearing aids, to steps by steps process of the fitting, follow-ups and other available options. A trust between you and you hearing health provider is important to ensure smooth sailing of the rehabilitation process.

3. Support

Be assure that your Audiologist will help you along the journey. However, it is also strongly advised to get family members, friends or partner to be part of the process as this process revolve in the essence of communication. Communication is a two-way interaction involving listener and speaker. Thus, active participation from both listener and speaker can help in reducing the problems that may arise during the interaction. Do not hide you hearing loss and do not struggles alone. It is another stepping stone that worth to consider to be open up of your current situation to people surrounding you as source of motivation and comfort.

4. Experiment and Practice

Utilize your hearing aids consistently and don’t be afraid to explore its features and understand its limitation. From this process, you will notice likes and dislike that may be helpful for your Audiologist to make adjustment during follow up appointment. It is also good to involve your communication partner in the process as to help you determine strategies; such as position, speed, loudness, distance and area, that the hearing aids and you work best.

5. Patience

Be easy on yourself. Don’t succumb into blaming yourself when communication gets hard. Don't pull yourself away from others. Appreciate your effort and effort put in by others. Like any other things in life, some days it may goes smoothly, some days you may stumble hard. Stay positive and be patience.

-Sonia Jaya, Audiologist, (MyEar Singapore & Stealth Sonics)