Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Tips For Handling A Husband Hard Of Hearing

By Sarah King

As people age, everyone starts to see signs of their bodies slowing down. Sometimes things don't work as well as they used to. When you notice your husband being less attentive than usual and turning the television up louder and louder, you might question how well he hears. Even when he says he can hear just fine, you probably strongly suspect you are dealing with a husband hard of hearing.

He may not want to admit it, and getting him to see an audiologist might be a real struggle, but you must do whatever necessary to convince to get his hearing tested. You might need to set up the appointment, drive him to it, and keep him company in the waiting room. If you're right and he has a problem, you both have to decide what to do next.

The audiologist will sit down with both of you and explain exactly what the issues are, how much loss there is, and what your spouse can expect going forward. The doctor may recommend hearing aids or cochlear implants as the best course of action. It's not a life threatening situation however, and your spouse has time to decide how he wants to handle it.

There are things you can do to make communicating with your partner easier and more effective. When you talk to him, look directly at him. You might touch his hand, face, or back to get his attention first. Avoid trying to have a conversation with the television on. Background noises make it hard for him to understand what you are saying. Don't yell or speak like you are talking to someone who doesn't understand English.

Going to public places, like restaurants or the mall, can be difficult because you can't adjust the background noise. In this case, pointing and gesturing are acceptable ways to get his attention. Don't chew, smoke, or cover your mouth when you're talking to your spouse. Remembering all this can be annoying, but you have to have patience. He didn't choose this loss. Finding ways to share a laugh about it, will help.

Your husband is not an invalid, and you aren't required to treat him like one. He has a responsibility to help you as well. He can tell when something you do makes it harder for him to hear you. He will have to handle public situations. He will have to learn to listen. You may have been telling him this for years, but now he doesn't really have a choice.

It's very important that you plan what to do in an emergency. There are special devices available to help with this. They can be visual, auditory and tactile. Some vibrate, and others flash.

Having trouble hearing what is going on around you is no fun. You might not be able to understand exactly what it's like, but you can be sympathetic and encouraging. He would do the same for you if the situation were reversed.

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