Hearing loss is a common problem, particularly among older adults. According to the Auslan Signbank, there are over one million people in Australia who have some form of hearing loss, mostly associated with aging.
For veterans, hearing loss is a particularly common problem. A study from the Department of Veterans Affairs found that nearly 60% of veterans aged 65 and older have some degree of hearing loss. If you have a loved one who is a veteran with hearing loss, there are some things you can do to help make communication easier.
Here are seven tips:
1. Get the Person’s Attention Before You Start Talking
If the person you’re talking to has hearing loss, it’s important to get their attention before you start speaking. You can do this by waving your hand, tapping them on the shoulder, or saying their name. This will help ensure that they are ready to listen and can better understand what you’re saying.
2. Speak Clearly and Slowly
When you’re talking to someone with hearing loss, it’s important to speak clearly and slowly. This will help them to better understand what you’re saying. It’s also important to enunciate your words and avoid using slang or jargon.
3. Face the Person When You are Talking
When you’re talking to someone with hearing loss, it’s important to face them. This will help them to see your lips and facial expressions, which can help them understand what you’re saying.
4. Avoid Talking Over Background Noise
If possible, try to avoid talking over background noise. This can be difficult, but it’s important to try to find a quiet place to talk. If you can’t avoid talking over background noise, try to face the person you’re talking to and speak a little louder than usual.
5. Try to Face the Person While You’re Talking
If you can’t avoid talking over background noise, try to face the person you’re talking to. This will help them to see your lips and facial expressions, which can help them understand what you’re saying.
6. Write Down Things If They Have Trouble Understanding You
If the person you’re talking to has trouble understanding you, try writing down what you’re saying. This can help to clarify things and make sure that they understand what you’re saying.
7. Be Patient and Respectful
It’s important to be patient and respectful when talking to someone with hearing loss. They may need extra time to process what you’re saying, so it’s important to be patient and not rush them.
There are a few key things to keep in mind when talking with veterans (or anybody else) with hearing loss in Australia. First, be aware of the challenges they may be facing in communicating, and be patient and understanding. Second, speak clearly and slowly, and make sure you are facing them so they can see your lips. Third, avoid using jargon or acronyms, and try to keep your sentences short and simple. Lastly, remember that veterans with hearing loss are just like anybody else – they are individuals with their own unique stories, experiences, and perspectives. By following these tips, you can help to ensure that all veterans have the opportunity to be heard and respected.
We at Country Hearing Care are a local, family-owned audiology practice providing expert hearing care across regional Australia. Our team has more than 15 years of combined experience in ethical client-centred care that focuses on improving your hearing health. Schedule an appointment with us today to experience our hearing services.