With Father’s Day just around the corner, chances are you’ll be visiting your family for the weekend. Family is an important part of our lives, giving us a place where we can be ourselves and feel accepted. What’s the biggest barrier to easy communication with your family? Hearing loss! This Father’s Day, make sure your dad gets the most out of the weekend by helping him hear.
Does Your Father Have Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss is one of the most common chronic health problems facing adults in America today. The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders reports that one third of seniors over the age of 65 have hearing loss. This figure rises to half of all seniors over 75! Dads are even more at risk. Due to spending much of their careers in dangerously loud work environments, men are twice as likely as women to have hearing loss. If your dad struggles to hear, then this Father’s Day is the perfect time to start a conversation about hearing.
Planning for Father’s Day
From taking you to your first ball game to helping you pick out your first car, your father has been influential in your life, helping you become the person you are today. Father’s Day is a chance to celebrate dads, step-dads, and other father figures, to show them how much you appreciate their input all these years. Have you planned a party to honor your dad? Did you invite the whole family?
It’s great you plan to celebrate dad, but it’s time to consider one more thing; his hearing. If your dad is struggling with hearing loss, a loud party could leave him out of the loop, confused, or frustrated that he can’t communicate like he used to. No one wants to be left in the dark, especially at a party in their honor. Here are a few tips to help the party go off without a hitch, and help your dad enjoy a great weekend.
Tips for Helping Dad Hear
Pull up a Chair
If dad is sitting in the living room, then it’s time you get comfortable and pull up a chair. Being at the same eye level increases his ability to hear and understand what you’re saying since he’ll be able to see you clearly. Those with hearing loss often rely of visual and nonverbal cues to follow conversations, so being on the same level means smoother communication.
Always Talk Straight
To help your dad hear, always talk to him face to face. Whether you’re showing him pictures of the grandkids or asking his advice about your alternator, make sure you’re facing him and not speaking from the side. This allows him to see your face and read your expressions easily. If you’re standing in front of the grill together or sitting beside each other to watch the game, make sure you’re on the side of his good ear.
Never shout at your dad from across the house. If you want to offer him another drink, close the fridge and go ask him. Speak clearly and slowly, keeping background noise to a minimum by turning off the TV or turning down the radio.
To make Father’s Day celebrations go off without a hitch, remind the family to speak one at a time. The grandkids are always excited to tell grandpa about their lives or show off their latest school art projects, but too many people talking at once will make Father’s Day stressful for your dad. Take turns speaking so he has a chance to attend fully to each person.
The Best Father’s Day Gift
We’re sure your dad will love that tie you bought for him last week, but perhaps the best gift you can give him is the gift of hearing. Talk to your dad about his hearing loss, and encourage him to seek treatment. Remind him of all the sounds he’s missing, and how much he struggles to follow conversations. This Father’s Day, celebrate positive change and make an appointment to comevisit us at Family Hearing Center of Hawaii for a hearing test. If you hurry, he could even have his new hearing aids in time for the big day! He’ll get the best gift of all, a relaxing Father’s Day hearing his loved ones clearly for the first time in years.