Combating Listener Fatigue in People with Hearing Loss
When you’ve suffered from hearing loss, just listening to someone for great lengths of time can be exhausting. What those with normal hearing may not understand is that “listener fatigue” is a real problem for hearing-impaired people.
There are several key parts of you sensory and auditory systems that are put to work when it comes to listening, and they’re put under even more stress when you don’t have full hearing abilities.
Keep the following tips in mind when trying to prevent listener fatigue.
One no-nonsense way to prevent listener fatigue is to simply improve your ability to hear through the use of assistive-listening devices, or “ALDs.” These can include, but are not limited to, hearing aids, inductive-loop devices and FM devices. If you strain a bit less to listen, it can go a long way toward easing fatigue.
One of the biggest instigators of listener fatigue is talking on the phone. Avoid making or receiving phone calls in noisy areas with a great deal of background noise. And avoid speaking on the phone when your connection is poor. Clarity is key. There are even devices built especially for smartphones that send received phone conversations directly to your hearing aids.
Take a break
Sometimes the simplest way to prevent fatigue is basic relaxation. Give your ears a break now and then by turning off your hearing aids or ALDs. And swap free-time activities that require listening (playing music, watching television, etc.) for those that don’t (reading a book, doing a crossword, etc.).
Just remember that giving yourself a breather from noisy environments and excessive conversation is always a good idea. Help your hearing and ease some stress by avoiding listener fatigue.
Source: Starkey Hearing Technologies