Families together for the festive season and hearing among the elderly


© H. Landaeta - sxc.jpg

GoLocal24, a local digital news and information group, looks at the psychology behind talking about hearing loss with elderly members of the family.

Now that the holidays have arrived, many people will be getting together to spend quality time with their families. This is one of those times when people may notice how the elderly members of their families have lost some of their hearing ability. With estimates of one third of people aged 65 to 74, and one half of people aged 75 and older suffering from some degree of hearing loss, the chances are high that many families will face this issue over the holidays. But is this the best time to bring up this potentially difficult subject?

GoLocal offers some advice about how to get the best results by remaining sensitive and focusing on the positive sides of the question. One of the suggestions is to carefully choose the right moment to speak to a parent or elderly loved-one, in other words not during the main family meal. Rather choosing a quiet moment for a natural one-to-one discussion will be a much better plan. Another is to highlight the fact that many people are in the same situation and are getting help to hear better, thus improving their quality of life and interactions with others.

Another important aspect is showing the affected person how the figures stack up. Since so many elderly people have hearing loss, it’s quite normal that they might too. Also focusing on the treatable nature of hearing impairment may help. There are some rather complicated health issues but hearing loss is simply not one of them.