If you have a family member with an untreated hearing loss, you are probably a Hearing Helper. What’s a Hearing Helper you ask? Well, it means that you are compensating for your loved one’s hearing loss.
Hearing Helpers sometimes act like a parrot. During a conversation, the Hearing Helper will repeat or rephrase a question or comment that someone else just said so the person with hearing loss can keep up with the conversation. Another example is a Hearing Helper going along to doctor appointments. Outside of the office, in the car or even at home, the Hearing Helper will brief their loved one regarding what the doctor said and his/her directions.
Sometimes, those with an untreated hearing loss talk loudly because they can’t hear themselves speak at a normal level. The Hearing Helper mirrors this action by talking as loudly. An untreated hearing loss can bring an active social life to a halt. A Hearing Helper will mirror their loved one’s actions and remove themselves from their active social life as well so their loved one won’t be lonely.
A Hearing Helper also mimics a personal assistant. They will notify their loved one of sounds they can’t hear by saying such things as “Your phone is ringing,” “Someone is knocking at the door,” “The microwave is beeping,” and “Your alarm is going off, it’s time for your pills.”
When a Hearing Helper is involved in the life of someone with an untreated hearing loss, that person is no longer independent. The person is relying on their Hearing Helper to essentially become their ears. From alarms and conversations with others, to doctor appointments and the phone ringing and to other sounds, the Hearing Helper needs to hear for their loved one.
While knowing and utilizing communication strategies is a good thing, encouraging your loved one to be safely independent is also a good thing. You can check out some tips on how to have a conversation with your loved one about their hearing loss HERE before encouraging them to visit Lemme Audiology Associates. During the visit at Lemme, you and your loved one will be able to find out the severity of their hearing loss and what options are available to them.
To schedule a hearing aid consultation for your loved one, where you can also attend with them, just call Lemme Audiology Associates at (814) 941-7770