You’re missing phone calls now. Sometimes, it’s that you can’t hear the phone ringing. Other times, you simply don’t want to deal with the annoyance of having a conversation with a garbled voice you can barely understand.
But you’re avoiding more than just phone calls. You missed out on last week’s softball game, too. This sort of thing has been happening more and more. Your starting to feel somewhat isolated.
Your hearing loss is, of course, the root cause. Your diminishing hearing is leading to something all too common: social isolation – and you can’t understand what to do about it. Getting away from loneliness and back to being social can be difficult. But we have a number of things you can try to do it.
Acknowledging Your Hearing Loss is The First Step
In a good number of cases, social isolation first manifests when you aren’t quite certain what the root cause is. So, recognizing your hearing loss is an important first step. That could mean scheduling an appointment with a hearing professional, getting fitted for hearing aids, and making sure you keep those hearing aids maintained.
Recognition may also take the form of telling people in your life about your hearing loss. Hearing loss is, in many ways, an unseen health condition. Someone who has hearing loss doesn’t have a particular “look”.
So when people look at you it’s not likely they will observe that you have hearing loss. Your friends may start to think your isolation is a step towards being antisocial. If you let people know that you are having a tough time hearing, your reactions will be easier to understand.
You Shouldn’t Keep Your Hearing Loss Secret
An essential first step is being honest with yourself and others about your hearing loss. Making sure your hearing stays consistent by getting regular hearing exams is also important. And it may help curb some of the initial isolationist inclinations you may feel. But you can overcome isolation with a few more steps.
Make Your Hearing Aids Visible
The majority of people feel like a smaller more invisible hearing aid is a more ideal choice. But if others could see your hearing aid they might have a better understanding of the difficulty you are going through. Some people even individualize their hearing aids with custom artwork. By making it more noticeable, you help other people to do you the courtesy of facing you when they talk to you and making certain you understand before moving the conversation on.
Get The Appropriate Treatment
If you’re not properly treating your hearing ailment it will be much harder to cope with your tinnitus or hearing loss. What “treatment” looks like may vary wildly from person to person. But wearing or properly adjusting hearing aids is usually a common factor. And your daily life can be substantially affected by something even this basic.
Let People Know How They Can Help You
It’s never fun to get yelled at. But individuals with hearing loss regularly deal with individuals who think that this is the best way to communicate with them. That’s why it’s vital that you advocate for what you require from people close to you. Perhaps texting to make plans would be better than calling. You will be less likely to isolate yourself if you can get everyone on the same page.
Put People In Your Path
In this time of internet-based food delivery, it would be easy to avoid all people for all time. That’s why intentionally putting people in your path can help you steer clear of isolation. Go to your local supermarket instead of ordering groceries from Amazon. Get together for a weekly card game. Social events should be arranged on your calendar. There are so many easy ways to see people such as walking around your neighborhood. Besides helping you feel less isolated, this will also help you to discern words precisely and to keep processing sound cues.
Solitude Can Be Hazardous
Your doing more than curtailing your social life by isolating yourself because of untreated hearing impairment. Isolation of this type has been linked to cognitive decline, depression, worry, and other mental health issues.
So the best way for you to keep your social life going and keep yourself happy and healthy along the way is to be realistic about your hearing ailment, recognize the truths, and do whatever you can to ensure you’re making those weekly card games.