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Senior couple with hearing loss watching photos from travel on digital camera during vacation

Aren’t there a couple of types of vacation? There’s the type where you jam every single activity you can into every waking moment. These are the vacations that are recalled for years later and are packed with adventure, and you go back to work more exhausted than you left.

Then there are the relaxing kinds of vacations. You might not even do much of anything on this kind of vacation. Maybe you spend a lot of time on the beach with some cocktails. Or maybe you’re getting spoiled at some resort for your whole vacation. These types of vacations will leave you really rested and recharged.

There’s no best to vacation. But untreated hearing loss can put a damper on whichever kind of vacation you choose.

Your vacation can be spoiled by hearing loss

There are a few unique ways that hearing loss can make a vacation more difficult, especially if you don’t recognize you have hearing loss. Many individuals who have hearing loss don’t even realize they have it and it eventually creeps up on them. They just keep turning the volume on their tv up and up and up.

The nice thing is that there are some tried and tested ways to lessen the effect hearing loss could have on your vacation. Scheduling a hearing exam is definitely the first step. The effect that hearing loss has on your fun times will be greatly diminished the more ready you are before you go.

How can hearing loss effect your vacation

So how can hearing loss negatively impact your next vacation? Well, there are a couple of ways. And while some of them might seem a bit trivial at first, they tend to add up! Here are a few common examples:

  • Important notices come in but you often miss them: Maybe you’re waiting for your train or plane to board, but you don’t ever hear the announcement. And as a consequence, your whole vacation schedule is cast into total chaos.
  • Language barriers become even more challenging: It’s hard enough to contend with a language barrier. But understanding voices with hearing loss, particularly when it’s very loud, makes it much more difficult.
  • You can miss out on the radiance of a new place: When what you’re hearing is muted, your experience may be muted as well. After all, your favorite vacation place is alive with unique sounds, like active street sounds or singing birds.
  • You can miss important moments with friends and family: Perhaps your friend just told a hilarious joke that everybody enjoyed, except you couldn’t hear the punchline. Important and enriching conversations can be missed when you have untreated hearing loss.

Not surprisingly, if you’re wearing your hearing aids, some of these negative impacts can be lessened and minimized. Which means the proper way to keep your vacation on track and free of stress is to manage your hearing needs before you go.

How to get ready for your vacation when you have hearing loss

That doesn’t mean that you can’t go on a trip if you have hearing loss. Not by any Means! But with a little additional planning and preparation, your vacation can still be enjoyable and relatively stress-free. Of course, that’s pretty common travel advice regardless of how good your hearing is.

Here are a few things you can do to ensure hearing loss doesn’t negatively impact your next vacation:

  • Clean your hearing aids: Before you go out on your travels, be certain that you clean your hearing aids. If you have clean hearing aids, you’re less likely to have troubles on vacation. It’s also a good idea to make certain your suggested maintenance is current!
  • Pre-planning is a smart plan: It’s okay to remain spontaneous to a degree, but the more planning you do before you go, the less you’ll need to figure things out on the fly (and that’s when hearing loss can introduce more obstacles).
  • Pack extra batteries: Having your hearing aids quit on the first day is no fun! Don’t forget to bring some spare batteries. So are you allowed to take spare batteries on a plane? Well, maybe, check with your airline. Some kinds of batteries must be stored in your carry-on.

Hearing aid travel tips

Once all the preparation and planning is done, it’s time to hit the road! Or, well, the airways, maybe. Many individuals have questions about going on a plane with hearing aids, and there are certainly some good things to recognize before you go to the airport.

  • When I go through the TSA security checkpoint, will I need to take out my hearing aids? You can keep your hearing aids in when you go through the security screening process. It’s usually a good plan to tell the TSA agents that you’re wearing them. If there is any kind of conveyor belt or X-ray machines, be certain that your hearing aids don’t go through that belt. Conveyor-belt style X-ray machines can create a static charge that can damage your hearing aids.
  • Can I use my hearing aids on the plane? When they tell you it’s time to off your electronic devices, you won’t need to turn your hearing aids off. But it’s a good plan to activate flight mode if your hearing aid heavily relies on Bluetooth connectivity or wifi. You might also want to let the flight attendants know you have hearing loss, as there may be announcements throughout the flight that are hard to hear.
  • How useful is my smartphone? This will not be shocking, but your smartphone is extremely helpful! After you land, you can utilize this device to change the settings on your hearing aid (if you have the correct kind of hearing aid), get directions to your destination, and even translate foreign languages. You might be able to take some stress off your ears if you’re able to use your phone like this.
  • If I wear my hearing aids more than usual, is that ok? Hearing aids are designed to be worn every day, all day. So, any time you aren’t sleeping, taking a shower, or going for a swim (or in a really loud environment), you should be using your devices.
  • Do I have some rights I should be aware of? It’s a good idea! In general, it’s smart to become familiar with your rights before you travel. If you’re dealing with hearing loss, you’ll have many rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Basically, you must have access to information. Talk to an airport official about a solution if you feel like you are missing some information and they will most likely be able to help.
  • Will I be able to hear well in an airport? How well you can hear in an airport will depend on which airport it is and what time of day. But a telecoil device will usually be set up in many areas of most modern airports. This is a basic wire device (although you’ll never see that wire, just look for the signs) that makes it easier for you to hear with your hearing aids, even when things are noisy and chaotic.

Life is an adventure, and that includes vacations

Whether you have loss of hearing or not, vacations are hard to predict. Not everything is going to go the way you planned it all the time. So be prepared for the unforeseen and try to have a positive attitude.

That way, when something unexpected happens (and it will), it’ll seem like it’s all part of the plan!

But you will be surprised less if you put together good preparations. When something goes awry, with the right preparations, you can keep it from going out of control.

Getting a hearing test and making certain you have the right equipment is usually the start of that preparation for people who have hearing loss. And whether you’re on vacation number one (sightseeing in the city), or vacation number two (chilling on a tropical beach somewhere), this advice will still hold.

Want to make sure you can hear the big world out there but still have concerns? Give us a call today!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.