dinning with hearing lose

Dining with hearing loss

Tips for dining with hearing loss

When you have hearing loss, dining out with family or friends can be especially frustrating. Multiple speakers and distracting background noise make it difficult if not impossible to keep up with the conversation. Oticon recently conducted a study of restaurants across the country and found that decibel readings were reaching damaging levels. You can read more about the results here. Luckily, there are steps you can take so that you can have an enjoyable experience when dining with hearing loss.

1. Request an early reservation

Anyone who has attended a lively social gathering knows that noise tends to rise as the party continues. The same is true for restaurants. An early start time helps to put you ahead of the building wave of sound.

2. Pick a quiet spot

Select a restaurant with a good hearing environment. Look for details that minimize background noise. Carpeting, cork or acoustic ceiling tiles, curtains, table clothes, seat cushions and other noise-absorbing features will dampen the noise level. Don’t hesitate to request a corner table, booth or a quiet spot away from the kitchen.

3. Speak up about your hearing loss

Don’t shy away from telling your dinner companions or your server that you have a hearing loss and noisy situations can be difficult for you. It’s tempting to nod and pretend you hear but people are usually happy to accommodate. If the music is preventing you from enjoying your dining experience, request a table away from the speakers or music source.

4. Take the best seat at the table

Choose a seat that lets you see as many faces as possible. That way, you’ll be able to see their lips while people are speaking. Opt for brighter lighting that lets you more easily pick up visual cues. Sometimes the best seat is the one beside a friend or loved one who can help fill you in on parts of the conversation you may miss.

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5. Wear your hearing aids

This is an obvious strategy for hearing better and one of the best. Oticon Opn™ hearing aids give you access to all sounds in the environment. You can hear what you want to hear, even in noisy situations, like restaurants or social gatherings, with multiple people speaking. You may also want to consider the extra help of a discreet clip-on remote/partner microphone like Oticon ConnectClip. The speaker simply clips on ConnectClip and sound is streamed directly to both of your Opn hearing aids.

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