Hearing impairment in the elderly – how do you communicate?

Hearing loss is a common impairment, however, it is often life changing. Untreated hearing loss results in misunderstood conversations and often can lead to isolation and depression. What are some things you can do to help those with hearing loss have a better chance of enjoying a conversation with you? Check out these tips:

  • Do not cover your mouth or rest your chin on your hand
  • Use appropriate gestures and facial expressions to convey your message
  • If you’ve stated something they did not understand, rephrase using different words and see if that help
  • Always ask if the person can hear you
  • Speak slowly and clearly enunciating each word
  • Pronounce each word normally (no need to draw out) but pause between words and don’t rush
  • Face your client directly when speaking
  • Provide a quiet place to speak void of background noise
  • Phone calls can be a very difficult way to communicate – instead focus on either in person meetings or written communication
  • Follow up on any meeting with written follow-up to make sure all points are understood and communicated clearly
  • Make sure you have their attention prior to beginning a conversation
  • DON’T SHOUT – a lot of folks tend to talk REALLY LOUD and hope this will help. It doesn’t. Clarity is more important than volume
  • Avoid chewing gum or eating while having a conversation
2014-11-10T21:08:06+00:00November 10th, 2014|Blog, Health & Wellness|

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