One of the hardest things to get used to when you are diagnosed with hearing loss, or when you have lived without hearing since you were born, is having to explain it to new people you meet. So as not to have to struggle to explain themselves with speech, some people with hearing loss devise ingenious ways to let people know they are hard of hearing at first glance. Not every solution may suit you, and you may well be comfortable explaining your condition to new people, but for those not so able to put their hearing loss into words, here are some alternative ways to let people know you’re hard of hearing.
Get a tattoo
Imgur user Raingoose, who has had hearing loss in one ear since she was a child, recently shared a picture on the internet of a new tattoo she designed to let people know about her hearing loss. She has a small computer symbol speaker tattooed behind her left ear with a cross next it to inform or remind people that she can’t hear anything in that ear. Other members of the hearing loss community have since shared their own hearing loss tattoos, which range from small letters spelling out ‘deaf’ to crossed out microphone symbols.
Use a clever app
There are several apps available for computers, tablets and smartphones that help people with hearing loss have normal conversations again. Instead of having try and explain your hearing loss to new people you meet, it might suit you better to whip your phone out and bring up an app like Spuble, a British app that allows people to record what they say and turn it into text for you to read. Another app, RogerVoice, translates phone calls into text and HearYouNow amplifies sounds for people with hearing loss.
Wear your hearing aids
If you wear hearing aids, people are more likely to know that you have hearing loss than if you don’t wear them. While many people aren’t comfortable wearing hearing aids and many others don’t even know they need them, embracing the technology can improve your life while acting as a visual prompt that lets people know you may find it difficult to hear them.
Use sign language
Body language is one of the only languages that is truly universal and a simple hand gesture is often enough to let someone know right away that you have hearing loss. Furthermore, if someone sees you using sign language they will know right away that there’s a possibility you have hearing loss.