Communicating with a colleague with hearing loss could be difficult if you talk to them like you talk to any other person. Learn how to talk to people with hearing loss. Speak slowly and clearly while talking to them. Some giveaways to support your colleague with hearing loss
- Be kind and patient.
- Talk face to face without covering it.
- Socialize with people having hearing loss
- Use visual clues
- Be an interpreter
Be kind and patient:
In the beginning, it could be difficult, but hearing loss patients require your support. Be patient and repeat till they understand you correctly. Give them time to listen and understand. It could be tough to switch from regular speech to speaking slowly but with time, the transition becomes easy.
Talk face to face without covering it:
Some people could read lips and communicate in return. Clear and slow speech could help them follow the conversation. So, in the presence of a hearing deficient person, talk slowly and clearly to help them understand. Mandate this a rule among the team members to facilitate communication
Socialize with people having hearing loss:
Hearing loss patients usually fear socializing. They do not understand the communication and feel left out from the conversation. Imagine absolute silence in a visibly vibrant setting. Instances like this could cause severe anxiety and confusion leading to self-imposed isolation. Help them get comfortable with the surroundings. Assist them in calibrating their hearing aid to the surroundings. Play the music to their comfort level. Making these adjustments help them get comfortable, enjoy the party and your company.
Use visual clues:
Visual cues are critical for communication. Carry a few ready-to-use visual cues to communicate. A study by the Japanese ministry of education revealed that audio-visual communication has helped the hearing loss patient understand the speaker. Audio-visual sensory communication has a considerable impact on hearing loss patients.
Be an interpreter:
Help the hearing loss patient communicate with others. Since you are familiar with communication, help them reach out to others and help others understand how to communicate with those dealing with hearing loss. Turn into their interpreter and bridge the communication gap.
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