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How to Maintain Independence with Hearing Loss

March 22, 2021

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Did you know that hearing loss is one of the most common challenges that older adults face in retirement? Having your hearing start to fade can add a whole new list of challenges to your lifestyle. This “hidden” health condition has an impact on your social connections, quality of life and perhaps most importantly, the independence that can make your golden years shine.

If you or a loved one is struggling with the adjustments that come with hearing loss, there are strategies that can help improve your quality of life. Keep reading below to discover helpful tips that can help seniors maintain their independence with hearing loss.

5 Tips to Help Seniors with Hearing Loss Maintain Independence

If you’re experiencing hearing loss, the first step you should take is visiting your doctor. Your doctor will be able to get a better understanding of how severe your hearing loss is. From there, they might prescribe a hearing aid which can provide support from your issues right out of the gate. However, there are times when a hearing aid isn’t a viable option, but there are ways to limit the level of impact hearing loss has on your independence.

1. Get in the Habit of Writing Things Down

One of the main issues with hearing loss is that it makes misunderstanding more common. Whether you can’t quite understand what someone is saying, or you are having more difficulty using your GPS, hearing loss can cast quite the shadow over your life. You can help limit this effect of hearing loss by getting into the habit of writing things down. Having a written record of medical information, prescriptions and appointments can help you avoid any confusion.

Try buying a whiteboard for your home, this lets you conveniently leave notes for friends and loved ones while sparking future conversation.

2. Look into a Home Security System

It’s natural for hearing loss to take away from your peace of mind, especially when it comes to the safety of your home. That’s why you should seriously consider installing a home security system. You might have a much harder time hearing someone breaking your window or opening up your garage. A security system will be able to detect any disturbances and immediately notify the police. Having a security system in place will also give your loved one’s peace of mind about your safety as well.

3. Change Out Your Smoke and Fire Alarms

Hearing loss makes regular smoke and fire alarms in your home much less effective. The good news is that there are alternatives specifically designed for people with hearing impairments. One of the best options is a fire alarm and smoke system that flashes a bright strobe light when it triggers. In fact, there are even models that will shake your bed in the event of a fire, so you won’t have to worry about it when you’re asleep.

4. Overhaul Your Mobile Communication

If you have hearing loss your loved ones and friends might be concerned about being able to get in touch with you. Staying connected to people close to you is an essential part of maintaining your independence. It’s important to have a cell phone or landline that adapts to your new needs. To help you find the right phone, The Hearing Loss Association of America has a list of options on their website you can explore. Features such added captioning and improved speakers can make your new phone easier to manage.

5. Take Lipreading Classes

Lipreading classes are a great tool for any older adult experiencing hearing loss. Learning to lipread will give you a reliable way to keep your communication skills alive now that you have hearing loss. Imagine being able to easily have full conversations and the effect it would have on your lifestyle. You can look to see if lip reading classes are offered in your area or explore a variety of online resources.

Regain Your Independence at Franciscan Ministries

If you’re looking to maintain your independence in retirement, Franciscan Ministries is here to support you. Our senior living communities provide you with personalized support as you trade in the hassles of home maintenance for more time to follow your passions. Find a community near you and contact our friendly team to learn more about how we can support your ideal lifestyle.