Do you suffer from hearing loss and aren’t sure how to cope with it at work? Here are some helpful tips to get you through the workday and help make life easier.
- Acceptance towards your own hearing loss is the first step. This way you are prepared for any workplace communication challenges that may arise.
- Remind yourself that you bring talent, hard work, and expertise to work every single day. Hearing loss does not define who you are, and will not affect your performance.
- Inform yourself about accommodations such as PSAP (personal sound amplification products). Other helpful tools are CART (Computer Assisted Realtime Translation), as well as assisted listening devices. (Hyper link to the hearing shop where the PSAP are found) Many modern devices come equipped with FM systems, amplified/captioned/flashing light phones, and streamers.
- Support for yourself is necessary, and asking the appropriate person in your workplace for reasonable accommodations can open new doors in productivity. Emphasize the benefits to your employer and always be honest and forthcoming. (You can probably consolidate this into #3)
- Express to your coworkers that you have hearing loss, and find the best ways to communicate with them. Requesting a peer faces you while speaking, and asking to rephrase words instead of repeating them can be beneficial. Be prepared to remind them more than once.
- Think Ahead and before meetings request from your employer to provide you with an agenda or list of attendees beforehand. If needed, utilize CART and other assisted listening devices. It is a good idea to arrive at meetings early, seating yourself in a centralized location with your back to the window.
- Foresee what you’ll need for conference calls. Request a remote CART and transcript. If those options are unavailable, ask your colleagues to take notes. While on a conference call, ask people to identify themselves each time they are speaking. (consolidate with 6)
- Plan with your colleagues in the event you are unable to hear the fire alarm, PA system announcements, and any other auditory alerts. A buddy system can help ensure that you will always be notified to auditory situations that may be difficult to hear.
- Learn through hearing loss related literature, online blog postings, as well as magazine articles, to stay up to date on hearing loss issues and information. (Not necessary)
- Relate with others who also suffer from hearing loss in your community. Some organizations that are excellent resources in connecting to others are the Hearing Loss Association of America (hearingloss.org) and the Hearing Health Foundation (hhf.org).
Our hearing healthcare providers are here to help educate and providing resources for your hearing concerns whether at work, home, or on the go. Visit out find a clinic page and schedule an appointment today!