How To Enjoy The Movies Or Live Theater With Hearing Loss

People with hearing loss are often nervous about going to the movies. They fear they won’t be able to understand the dialogue over the booming soundtrack, so they often wait for a film’s digital copy that they can watch in the privacy of their own home with the captions on. The same goes for attending live theater. With theater ticket prices on the rise, some people with hearing loss wonder why they should risk spending money on a show they might not understand.

But times are changing. Most movie theaters now provide free captioning devices, and many live entertainment theaters, particularly on Broadway, are improving the hearing access of patrons with hearing difficulties. So, note these tips to enjoy movies and theater shows to the fullest.

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How To Enjoy Dinner Time With Hearing Loss

My latest article for Hearing Tracker. Just in time for Thanksgiving!

Friend #1 says something, but I didn’t hear it. I ask her to repeat it, but before I get the words out, friend #2 has already responded to her, moving the conversation forward, yet farther away from me. I say “What?” again, but this does not stop the flow — Friend #1 replies back to Friend #2 and they are off, leaving me behind.

Friend #3, sensing my frustration, acts as a translator, summarizing what has been said so I can catch up. While this is thoughtful behavior and often gets us back on track, I sometimes wonder if it perpetuates the problem by enabling the inconsiderate behavior.

Does this sound familiar to you?

Living With Hearing Loss | A Hearing Loss Blog

For many people the evening meal is the most social part of the day. That is certainly the case for me. Whether it is a family dinner, date night, work event or evening out with friends, conversation and connection often revolve around the dinner table.

How can we make sure we are not left out of the dialogue? To read my suggestions, click here to continue reading on Hearing Tracker.

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Hearing Loss: Slow Down, You Talk Too Fast

Don’t you sometimes wish the world would slow down a little bit. The racing from activity to activity, the constant barrage of emails and texts, even the hourly news cycle can be exhausting. No wonder people seem to be speaking at a faster and faster rate. Or maybe it just seems that way because of my hearing loss. Lately, I find that my brain needs a little extra processing time to help me hear my best. I have added “Please repeat that more slowly,” to my list of “What?” replacements.

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Hearing Loss & The Irony Of The Entertainment Business

“Goodbye yellow brick road,” Elton John belted out the title song of his final concert tour. My family rarely attends concerts — given my hearing loss I worry about damaging it further — but we are big Elton John fans and could not bear to miss our last chance to see him perform live. The sold out show in Madison Square Garden was outstanding with the crowd singing along to its favorite oldies but goodies. My family and I were able to enjoy the performance because we came prepared with hearing protection and the knowledge of how to use it. You can read my tips for attending a concert in my article, “How To Enjoy a Concert Safely When You Have Hearing Loss.”

As we made our way to our seats, the irony dawned on me. We were not allowed to smoke, to bring in outside food or drink, or even use caps on our plastic water bottles (I guess they think people will throw them?!?), but we could blast our ears with 110 decibel sound for 3 hours without any rules stating otherwise. There was not even a posted sign suggesting we protect our hearing with earplugs or ear muffs. Something seemed wrong with that.

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Getting Your Family On Your Hearing Loss Team

It feels like we talk about it all the time. “Please face me so I can hear you,” or “Can you repeat that slower,” but I sometimes wonder if it is sinking in. Objectively, I think my family knows what they need to do to help me hear, but it often slips their mind, or seems unimportant since in many cases, I function quite well. It’s not obvious that I need help, so when I do, they are not always there for me. Until recently. We had a formal family meeting about my hearing loss. It seemed to make a difference. My fingers are crossed that this momentum will continue.

Living With Hearing Loss | A Hearing Loss Blog

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