Senior couple with hearing loss watching photos from travel on digital camera during vacation

Aren’t there a couple of types of vacation? One kind is full of activities the whole time. This type will leave you more exhausted than when you left but all of the fun will be remembered for years to come.

Then there are the relaxing types of vacations. You might not even do much of anything on this type of vacation. Maybe you spend a lot of time on the beach with some cocktails. Or maybe you spend your entire vacation at some sort of resort, getting pampered the entire time. These are the restful and relaxing types of vacations.

There’s no best to vacation. But untreated hearing loss can jeopardize whichever kind of vacation you choose.

Your vacation can be ruined by hearing loss

Your vacation can become a challenge if you have hearing loss, especially if you’re not aware of it. Look, hearing loss can sneak up on you like nobody’s business, many individuals have no clue they have it. On all their devices, the volume just continues going higher and higher.

The nice thing is that there are some proven ways to reduce the effect hearing loss might have on your vacation. The first move, of course, will be to schedule a hearing screening if you haven’t already. The effect that hearing loss has on your fun times will be greatly reduced the more ready you are in advance.

How can hearing loss effect your vacation

So how can hearing loss negatively impact your next vacation? There are actually a small number of ways as it turns out. Individually, they may not seem like that big of a deal. But when they begin to compound it can become a real problem. Here are some common instances:

  • You can miss significant moments with friends and family: Everybody enjoyed the funny joke that your friend just told, but unfortunately, you missed the punchline. Significant and enriching conversations can be missed when you have untreated hearing loss.
  • You miss important notices: Maybe you miss your flight because you didn’t hear the boarding call. And as a consequence, your entire vacation schedule is thrown into total disarray.
  • You can miss out on the vibrancy of a new place: When what you’re hearing is muted, your experience could be muted too. After all, your favorite vacation spot is alive with unique sounds, like bustling street sounds or singing birds.
  • Language barriers become even more tricky: Coping with a language barrier is already hard enough. But deciphering voices with hearing loss, particularly when it’s really loud, makes it much harder.

Not surprisingly, if you’re wearing your hearing aids, some of these negative impacts can be mitigated and minimized. Which means the proper way to keep your vacation moving in the right direction and stress free is to manage your hearing needs before you start.

How to get ready for your vacation when you have hearing loss

That doesn’t mean that you can’t go on a trip if you have hearing loss. Not by any Means! But it does mean that, when you’re dealing with hearing loss, a little bit of additional planning and preparation, can help ensure your vacation goes as easily as possible. Of course, that’s rather common travel advice no matter how strong your hearing is.

Here are several things you can do to ensure hearing loss doesn’t negatively effect your next vacation:

  • Keep your hearing aids clean: Before you head out on your travels, be certain that you clean your hearing aids. If you have clean hearing aids, you’re less likely to have difficulties on vacation. It’s also a good idea to make certain your recommended maintenance is current!
  • Bring extra batteries: Having your hearing aids die on the first day is the worst! Always make certain you bring spares! So are you allowed to take spare batteries on a plane? Well, possibly, consult your airline. Some kinds of batteries need to be kept in your carry-on.
  • Pre-planning is a smart plan: It’s okay to be spontaneous to a degree, but the more planning you do before you go, the less you’ll need to figure things out on the fly (and that’s when hearing loss can introduce more difficulties).

Tips for traveling with hearing aids

Finally, it’s time to hit the road now that all the planning and preparation have been done! Or, well, the airways, possibly. Many individuals have questions about flying with hearing aids, and there are certainly some good things to know before you go to the airport.

  • If I wear my hearing aids more than usual, is that ok? Most hearing specialists will recommend that you use your hearing aids all day, every day. So you should be using your hearing aids whenever you aren’t in an extremely loud setting, swimming, or showering.
  • Is it ok to take a flight with hearing aids in? You won’t need to turn off your hearing aids when you get that “all electronics must be off” announcement. But it’s a good plan to enable flight mode if your hearing aid relies heavily on Bluetooth connectivity or wifi. You might also want to tell the flight attendants you have hearing loss, as there could be announcements throughout the flight that are difficult to hear.
  • How helpful is my smartphone? Your smartphone is extremely helpful, not surprisingly. After you land, you can use this device to adjust the settings on your hearing aid (if you have the correct type of hearing aid), find directions to your destination, and even translate foreign languages. If your phone is capable of doing all that (and you know how to use all those apps), it may take some strain off your ears.
  • Should I be aware of my rights? Before you travel it’s not a bad plan to get familiar with your rights. If you have hearing loss, you’ll have many rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Basically, you must have access to information. Talk to an airport official about a solution if you think you are missing some information and they should be able to help.
  • Will I be able to hear well in an airport? That depends, some airports are quite noisy during certain times of the day. But most modern airports will have a telecoil device setup throughout many areas. This is a basic wire device (though you’ll never see that wire, just look for the signs) that makes it easier for you to hear with your hearing aids, even when things are noisy and chaotic.
  • Do I need to take my hearing aids out when I go through TSA security? You won’t need to take your hearing aids out for the security screening. It’s usually a good idea to tell the TSA agents that you’re wearing them. Don’t ever allow your hearing aids to go through an X-ray machine or conveyor belt. Your hearing aids can be damaged by the static charge that these conveyor style X-ray devices produce.

Vacations are one of life’s many adventures

Vacations are unpredictable with or without hearing loss. Not everything is going to go the way you planned it all the time. So be prepared for the unforeseen and try to have a good mindset.

That way you’ll still feel like your plans are on track even when the unavoidable challenge happens.

However, the flip side to that is that preparation can make a difference. When something goes amiss, with the correct preparations, you can keep it from spiraling out of control.

For people with hearing loss, this preparation frequently begins by getting your hearing assessed and making sure you have the hardware and care you need. And that’s the case whether you’re visiting every museum in New York City (vacation type number one) or lounging around on a beach in Mexico (vacation type number two).

Want to make sure you can hear the big world out there but still have concerns? Give us a call today!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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