Wearing a face mask with hearing loss is challenging.
COVID-19 has made wearing a face mask part of our daily life, making communication with others even more difficult for those with hearing impairment who rely on visual cues (e.g. mouth movements, facial expressions).
Below are some tips and tricks hearing aid wearers can adopt and implement to limit the challenges of wearing a mask with hearing aids.
Choose a double strap mask that ties at the back of the head
While the standard mask is one with ear loops, a mask that ties behind the head can eliminate the discomfort of having the loops interfere with the positioning of your hearing aid.
Use face mask extenders
There are various ways of supporting the loops of your mask other than using your ears, including button extensions or mask extenders that protect your ears and help avoid discomfort.
Tie up long hair & remove glasses
To ensure your hearing aid is secure, keep your ears free from interference before putting your mask on.
Remove your mask slowly and carefully
Remove your mask one side at a time and hold your hearing aid with one hand while using the other to remove your mask. You don’t want to fling off your mask as you risk your hearing aid flying off with it.
Other suggestions to ease communication with others
Try to select a seat in the centre of the dinner table so you can see and hear people on either side of you. If you can see everyone’s faces clearly, that will help during animated group conversations.
If you are at a restaurant, try to call ahead and ask for a table on the edge of the room where you can sit facing a wall and in a quieter part of the venue (if possible). With the noise behind you, the natural shape of your ear and/or your hearing aids (if you wear them) will help to filter out the sounds from behind you and help you focus on the sounds in front of you.
HEALTHY HEARING TIP | Try not to sit with your back against the wall.
Lower the music volume
It will help you hear the conversations. It is a good idea to keep the volume of your music on the lower side.
- Is my hearing device all in good working order?
- Do I need batteries? Or have I fully charged my device?
- Change the filters
- Check tubing is clear of wax.
Consider taking a few spare batteries and/or your charger with you- just in case.
New hearing device
If you have just received new hearing aids, just like a new pair of shoes, we recommend you wear them.
This can be as simple as wearing the device as much as possible when you are at home with familiar people and surroundings. If you notice any discomfort, pain or frustration, get in contact with your Lions Hearing Audiologist to get that fixed.
HEALTHY HEARING TIP | When you wear your hearing device, you are re-training your brain and you may reduce your risk of dementia | READ MORE
Modern technology in digital hearing aids does more than amplify sounds. They are specifically designed to filter out unwanted noise, which will help you focus on speech, reduce background noise and cut back on distortion.
Invisible hearing aids | READ MORE