Reflections on Hearing Loss

KB in Seattle copyInterview with Stu Nunnery, After hearing loss, Katherine Bouton finds new purpose in life. This paragraph about HLAA is just one part. Click on the link to read the whole interview.

Stu: Hearing loss has many side effects short and long term and most troubling to many of us is the isolation, depression, and other long term health issues.

Katherine: This is why I advocate for HLAA. Joining your local chapter of HLAA is the best way you can find others like you. It doesn’t mean you give up your hearing friends or your hearing life, but you meet new friends. And because many HLAA meetings have Communication Access Real Time (CART) capability, you can actually comfortably “hear” in these meetings.  I’ve learned a huge amount in casual conversation with my HLAA friends, and even more from the structured programs we sponsor. That said, in contrast to the very culturally vibrant deaf community, outside of HLAA (and maybe ALDA) there isn’t a hearing-loss community at all, much less a vibrant one. I think active HLAA members do have a vibrant community, but it’s hard to get people interested.

 

Source: After hearing loss, Katherine Bouton finds new purpose in life

6 thoughts on “Reflections on Hearing Loss

  1. HLAA (Hearing Loss Association of America) is the best place to join when you have a hearing loss. The information you need on hearing aids, cochlear implants, assistive listening devices, CapTel phones, telecoils, and captioning available on your TV and Communication Access Real Time (CART). You will not be provided in most cases this information from your ear doctor, family physician or hearing health provider. The problem is most people who experience hearing loss have no information before they attempt to do something about their invisible disability and sometimes the hearing aid ends up in the draw.

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    • Thanks Hermine. As far as I am concerned, you have pushed the right button. Most people I know who wear hearing aids were not given any information at all by their provider about assistive listening devices, or other non hearing aid solutions to increase their potential success with their expensive instruments. I have a friend who, more often than not, wears his hearing aids in his shirt pocket. This attitude belies a poor support experience with the doctor or audiologist. That situation must change. It would seem to me that anyone dispensing hearing aids is ethically obliged to address the whole hearing experience, including the areas you mentioned, not just what the hearing aid can provide. My “former” audiologist claims never to have heard of HLAA! Had I been advised to join HLAA years ago, I would be much better informed today, rather than playing catch-up.

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      • Let people know you understand what hearing loss is all about. I am a senior but most seniors do not recognize their hearing loss because it signifies that they are growing “old.” Relate your information to a hearing person who may also help because every hearing person knows of a person, friend or family member who is losing their hearing. They turn up the volume on the television so loud it hurts everybody’s ears. Having an exhibitor table at a health fair is a good way too. You may not get many members but at least you are letting people know that help is available.

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  2. Thanks so much for your comment. People can get information about HLAA at hearingloss.org.
    For information about your local chapter, go to the chapters link on the home page.
    HLAA is a powerful advocate for people with hearing loss, and it’s also a great educational and support resource.

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