Is the loss of hearing getting in the way of your summer fun? Most likely it’s even worse if you’re not aware of it. The slow decay of hearing that goes along with aging and certain ear diseases will mean that you won’t always recognize that there are some things you don’t hear anymore. You may also hold back on engaging in fun summertime events that you love simply because you don’t hear as well. You will still be able to get out and have a great time if you look for some solutions to your hearing loss difficulties.
Summertime cookouts do get a bit tricky if you have hearing loss. To begin with, there is a large amount of background noise. There are a lot of discussions happening around you. Kids might be having fun in the grass or swimming pool. You have the sounds of nature including singing birds, barking dogs, and the crackling sound of food cooking on the grill.
All that noise competes with any residual hearing you may have left. This type of background noise will easily overtake someone that has hearing decline.
Here are a few tips to help you compensate:
Some of the overwhelming background noise can be reduced by finding a quiet place to sit for a while. Facing away from the sun will allow you to see people when they are talking and use their lips to figure out words you miss.
- Turn off the background music or turn it down, at least. If it’s your barbecue, you can simply decide not to have any music. Let the host know about your issue if you are attending someone else’s barbecue.
- Get away from time to time. It can be exhausting when you are struggling to hear. Every hour or so try to go inside or a little ways away from all the noise.
- Inform others that you can’t hear. It’s annoying for you and people around you if you try to fake it. Tell people when you can’t hear them. Cupping your ear and other visual clues can suggest that you can’t hear to others. Usually, people will come closer or speak louder to help you.
Don’t attempt to hear everything. The fact that you can’t take part in every conversation is something you need to acknowledge. Alternatively, try to take part in smaller groups of people and set practical limits for yourself.
Do you really realize what you are missing outside? Don’t be scared to walk outside the house and concentrate on the sounds of the natural world. No, you won’t be able to hear everything but with a little focus, you may hear more than you think possible.
Make a game out of it and listen for:
- Birds singing
- Insects buzzing
- Evening crickets
- The leaves blowing
- The rain falling
- Kids running around and playing
- Dogs barking
- Splashing waves
If you only try to hear one thing at a time, you can manage your expectations every time you go outdoors, head to the beach or walk in the park.
Enjoy a Vacation or Maybe Just a Day Trip
Isn’t that what summertime is meant for? What kind of vacation would you enjoy? What constraints come along with your hearing loss that will affect it? Sailing or fishing would be perfect but a theme park would probably be a bit too much. Spend a day walking around a nature preserve or alternatively go to the zoo. Take a walk on the boardwalk near the beach or go to a museum.
Don’t let your hearing loss rob you of your opportunity to travel this summer. If you’re going to fly, tell the airline that you have hearing loss when you buy the ticket. Inform the hotel or resort, also, so they can get you a room that has accommodations for the hearing impaired including smoke alarms with flashing lights or shaking beds and TVs that have closed captioning.
Look for ways to improve yourself this summer such as going to a fitness class or learning to paint. If you would like to find a spot in the front, get there early. If you do miss anything, it would be prudent to have a couple of friends with you to fill in the blanks.
This Summer You Should Take Safety Measures
There are a number of summer traditions that require you to take safety measures to protect yourself, your ears, and any expensive hearing assistance devices you own. Play it safe by:
- While you are enjoying the pool or beach, play it safe. Use earplugs to prevent ear infections and keep your hearing aids dry.
- Bring a friend with you on those enjoyable evening walks. Loss of hearing means that you won’t always recognize things such as vehicles driving towards you or even a stranger coming up behind you.
- Safeguard what hearing you do have by using ear protection if you go to watch the fireworks for Independence Day or to an outdoor concert.
Making The Most of it This Summer
Many of these summer obstacles become less substantial when you do three simple things.
- Have your ears checked by a hearing care specialist. It may be possible that your hearing loss is treatable.
- Get a professional hearing examination, so you know if you do have hearing loss.
- Wear good-quality hearing aids. They will get rid of background noises so that you will hear what’s relevant.
Summertime is all about having fun. Don’t allow the loss of hearing rob you of that.