As we witness the environment coming to life this spring, let’s take a moment to celebrate our connections with loved ones and community members. When we are out witnessing nature coming alive, we can enjoy connections with friends. When we take a walk in the woods, we can enjoy the scenery with our family members. When we sit in a public park listening to the birds chirping and bugs buzzing, we can enjoy a chat with a community member. These connections are at the heart of this year’s celebration of Better Hearing and Speech Month.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association sets aside the month of May each year to focus on a specific theme, and this year we have the opportunity to think about “Connecting People.” What do these connections have to do with hearing loss? As you might well know, hearing loss can get in the way of connections between people, particularly when that connection is based in verbal communication. Let’s consider some of the ways that our experiences of spring can be hindered by untreated hearing loss, as well as how hearing aids can help us forge strong and lasting connections with others.
Connecting with Friends
In much of the United States, the spring is a great time to enjoy nature coming alive with a friend. You might like to go to a botanical garden where the flowers are in full bloom. A seaside retreat can be a great place to see bird activity and plant-life thriving once again. Even a mountaintop vista takes on a new sheen when it is full of budding trees and plants. Each of these experiences enlivens the senses and inspires you to connect with a friend in the natural world. However, communication can be impeded by hearing loss in these scenarios. Whether you are in a garden, near the sea, or on top of a mountain, those with hearing loss often find they are challenged by sounds in the environment that make it difficult to converse. Wearing your hearing aids in these places makes it easier to connect and comment on the enjoyment you experience in the natural world.
Connecting with Family
Taking the family on a hike in the woods is a great way to build connections and make memories. Children can be particularly thrilled by what they find in the woods, ranging from new growth on the forest floor to baby animals that make their debut. While you are on a walk with the family in the woods, you will likely what to help children and others understand what they see. Learning the names of trees, plants, and animals is a fun way to encounter the woods, but hearing loss can make these conversations difficult. Don’t forget your hearing aids when you embark on your hike, and make sure they are fully charged!
Connection with Community Members
Sometimes sitting on a bench in a public park is the best way to experience spring. You can rest easily with a book or newspaper while smelling the fresh air and hearing the new buzz of insects and wildlife around you. Public parks are designed to build connections between community members. If you find yourself in a park and a ball goes bouncing by, you might want to pass it back to the owner. If someone gets a flat on a bicycle, you might be able to help or instruct the person on the nearest repair shop. Once again, untreated hearing loss can get in the way of connecting with your community in these public spaces. Although our deep connections with friends and family members might feel like the most important connections, casual conversations with strangers in the community also instill the feeling that we are not alone.
If you have not yet received treatment for your hearing loss, don’t delay getting assistance. We are just a phone call away to make an appointment for a hearing test. Once we deliver the treatment you need, those hearing aids can be a crucial way to connect with friends, family, and community members this spring. Let’s focus on “Connecting People” through treatment for hearing loss this spring!
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