As a caregiver, you can make a difference. Try these tips to help someone take the first step.
Tell your friend or loved one how much you value the relationship, and how his/her hearing loss affects you. Do so with compassion and tenderness; avoid showing frustration—or using threats, confrontation, or guilt.
If you are a spouse, ask your adult child, the person's close friend, or a trusted doctor to gently recommend professional help. Sometimes, encouragement coming from others is better received.
If perceived cost is a concern, gather information on healthcare payment plans. There are many attractive financial options available for purchasing hearing aids.
Have annual hearing exams yourself!
Today's hearing aids are tiny, lightweight, and utilize state-of-the art micro-processor technology. Do some research to dispel misconceptions someone may hold about hearing aids.
Ask people you know who've had positive outcomes with their hearing aids to share their stories with the person you are caring for. Firsthand experiences from happy hearing aid wearers can make a big difference.
Repeating yourself, elevating your voice, and relaying phone/television conversation encourages people to delay seeking help. So, refrain from being someone's “ears.”
A proper diagnosis by a skilled hearing care practitioner is essential for a customized solution. Discovering the right hearing aids, and trying them before buying them, can really be effective.
Accompany the person to the hearing exam and participate in the process. Your input will better inform the hearing care specialist, and improve the likelihood of a successful outcome.
Sharing experiences with others going through the same challenges can create a sense of belonging, and provide encouragement. Research support groups in your area, or start one of your own.
Research tells us that continuous “family recommendation and pressure” is the number one reason people seek hearing help. So, continued patience, compassion and factual information will surely pay off!
The findings of a recent major study point to a proven link between untreated hearing loss and the development of Alzheimer's Disease and dementia. Catching and treating hearing loss early can help delay, or prevent, its onset.
Because the symptoms of hearing loss and Alzheimer's disease are similar, it's important to rule out hearing loss if your loved one's behavior is changing.
Finally, if your loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, and hearing loss is also present, treating it with hearing aids can help alleviate many of the Alzheimer's symptoms.
At Beltone, we specialize in making “first-time” patients feel right at home. Schedule a FREE hearing assessment.