Hearing Loss—7 Tips for Better Communication

Hearing loss is a common problem caused by noise, aging, disease, and heredity. Approximately one in three people between the ages of 65 and 74 has hearing loss, and nearly half of those over 75 have difficulty hearing.

Here are some tips you can use when talking with someone who has a hearing problem:

  • In a group, include people with hearing loss in the conversation.
  • Find a quiet place to talk to help reduce background noise, especially in restaurants and at social gatherings.
  • Stand in good lighting and use facial expressions or gestures to give clues.
  • Face the person and speak clearly. Maintain eye contact.
  • Speak a little more loudly than normal, but don’t shout.
  • Try to speak slowly, but naturally.
  • Do not hide your mouth, eat, or chew gum while speaking.

For more tips like this and to learn more about hearing loss in older adults, visit the NIA website.

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