Living with hearing loss can be a difficult adjustment for you and your family members. Sometimes, it can even be hazardous.
What happens if a smoke detector is sounding or someone is yelling out your name but you’re unable to hear them? If you have untreated hearing loss, you won’t hear those car sounds that could be signaling an impending threat.
But the “what ifs” aren’t something you should worry about. The first thing that a person with untreated hearing loss should do is get a hearing test. For individuals with hearing aids, we have some tips to help you and your loved ones remain safe, even when you aren’t likely to be using your hearing aids.
1. Bring a friend with you when you leave the house
Bring somebody with healthy hearing out with you if possible. If you have to go out alone, request that people come closer and look at you when they talk.
2. Stay focused when you drive
Because you can rely on your hearing less, it’s important to minimize other distractions when driving. Pull over if you need to plot a route and stay away from your phone and GPS. Before driving, if you are worried that you may have an issue with your hearing, call us for an assessment.
If there are moments while you’re driving that you might need to have your passengers quiet down or turn off the radio, there’s no shame. Safety first!
3. Think about getting a service dog
You think of service animals as helpful for individuals with visual impairment, epilepsy, or other conditions. But if you’re dealing with auditory problems, they can also be very helpful. You can be alerted to danger by a service dog. They can inform you when somebody is at your door.
Not only can they help with these problems, but they also make a great companion.
4. Make a plan
Determine what you’ll do before an emergency happens. Talk it over it with other people. For example, be certain your family knows that you will be in the basement in the case of a tornado. Plan a specific location outside your house in the case of a fire.
This way, emergency personnel, and your family will know where you will be if something were to go wrong.
5. Pay extra attention to visual clues while driving
Over time, it’s likely that your hearing loss has gotten worse. If your hearing aids aren’t regularly fine-tuned, you may find yourself depending more on your eyes. You may not hear sirens so watch out for flashing lights. When kids or pedestrians are nearby, be extra attentive.
6. Let friends and family know about your limitations
No one wants to disclose that they have hearing impairment, but those in your life need to know. You may need to get to safety and people around you will be able to make you aware of something you may have missed. They most likely won’t bother alerting you if they assume you hear it too.
7. Keep your car well-maintained
As a person living with hearing loss, you might not be able to hear strange thumps, clicks, or screeches when you drive. These can signal a serious problem. Your car could take serious damage and your safety may be in danger if these noises aren’t dealt with. It’s a smart idea to ask a trustworthy mechanic for their opinion on the condition of your vehicle when you bring it in for an oil change or inspection.
8. Manage your hearing loss
If you want to stay safe, getting your hearing loss treated is vital. In order to know if you require a hearing aid, have your hearing examined yearly. Don’t allow pride, money, or time constraints stop you. Hearing aids nowadays are very functional, affordable, and discreet. A hearing aid can help you stay safer in all aspects of your life.