Wearing hearing aids can be an adjustment, both physically and socially. In order to maximize the benefits of your device, let’s discuss a few of the ways you can feel confident wearing your hearing aids in any situation.
Hearing Aids and Social Stigma
Unfortunately, many people are hesitant to use hearing aids because of the social stigma that goes along with having hearing loss. You may be afraid that people will view you as old or less capable if they find out you wear hearing aids.
Perhaps you’ve even experienced this firsthand. You’re having a normal conversation with someone when they suddenly catch a glimpse of your hearing aid. They proceed to start shouting or overemphasizing their pronunciation in a misguided attempt to be helpful.
This fear of stigmatization can make you not want to wear hearing aids in certain situations or maybe even all together. Research has shown that hearing loss stigma is strongly associated with feelings of altered self-perception.
Flip the Script on Hearing Aid Stigma
One of the best ways to combat this stigma is to reframe it, both for yourself and others. Next time someone notices your hearing aids, proudly acknowledge them. Talk about the features you like, such as how small they are or their Bluetooth™ capabilities. By focusing on the positives, you can help to change the perception others have of your hearing loss, which in turn can make you feel more confident as well.
Get Comfortable Hearing with Your Device
In order to focus on the positives of hearing aids, you must first feel comfortable and happy with your device. You can do that by:
- Getting the fit right. Work with your audiologist to make sure your device is as comfortable as possible before going home with them.
- Take it slow during the adjustment phase. With hearing aids, you’re likely hearing sounds you have been missing out on for a while. It’s also normal for things to sound loud or high-pitched at first. Ask your audiologist if your device can be programmed to slowly amp up over several weeks to make things easier. Also give yourself time before going to loud, noisy environments like Woodblock where the sound might be overwhelming.
- Wear your device consistently. You’ll adjust to your hearing aids quicker if you wear them during all your waking hours, apart from showering or other times they might get wet.
For more information on hearing aids or to speak with one of our experts, contact Evergreen Speech and Hearing Clinic today.