There are two types of vacations, right? One kind is Packed with activities at all times. This kind will leave you more tired than when you left but all of the fun will be remembered for many years to come.
Then there are the relaxing types of vacations. These are the trips where you might not do, well, much of anything. Maybe you drink a bit of wine. Maybe you spend a day (or two, or three) on the beach. Or maybe you’re getting spoiled at some resort for your whole vacation. These are the peaceful and relaxing kinds of vacations.
Everybody has their own concept of the perfect vacation. Whichever method you prefer, however, neglected hearing loss can put your vacation in jeopardy.
Hearing loss can ruin a vacation
Your vacation can become a difficulty if you have hearing loss, especially if you’re not aware of it. Many people who have hearing loss don’t even recognize they have it and it eventually creeps up on them. They just keep cranking the volume on their television up and up and up.
But the effect that hearing loss can have on a vacation can be lessened with some proven methods, and that’s the good news. The first move, of course, will be to schedule a hearing screening if you haven’t already. The more ready you are ahead of time, the easier it will be to reduce any power hearing loss could have over your fun, rest, and relaxation.
How can hearing loss effect your vacation
So how can hearing loss negatively effect your next vacation? There are actually a few ways as it turns out. And while some of them might seem a bit insignificant at first, they have a tendency to add up! Here are a few common instances:
- Meaningful experiences with friends and family can be missed: Maybe your friend just told a hilarious joke that everybody enjoyed, except you couldn’t make out the punchline. Significant and enriching conversations can be missed when you have untreated hearing loss.
- The radiant life of a new place can be missed: When what you’re hearing is muted, your experience may be muted also. After all, you could miss out on the distinctive bird calls or humming traffic noises that make your vacation spot special and memorable.
- You miss significant notices: Maybe you’re waiting for your train or aircraft to board, but you never hear the announcement. And as a consequence, your whole vacation schedule is cast into total chaos.
- Getting beyond language barriers can be frustrating: Managing a language barrier is already difficult enough. But neglected hearing loss can make it even harder to understand voices (particularly in a noisy setting).
A number of these negative situations can be avoided by simply using your hearing aids. Which means the best way to keep your vacation on track and stress free is to take care of your hearing needs before you start.
If you have hearing loss, how can you prepare for your vacation?
All of this doesn’t mean that hearing loss makes a vacation unachievable. Not by any Means! But it does mean that, when you’re dealing with hearing loss, a little bit of extra planning and preparation, can help ensure your vacation goes as smoothly as possible. Whether you have hearing loss or not, this is definitely practical travel advice.
You can be sure that hearing loss won’t have a negative effect on your vacation, here are a number of things you can do:
- Do a little pre-planning: 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 present more challenges).
- Keep your hearing aids clean: Before you head out on your travels, be certain that you clean your hearing aids. This can help avoid issues from developing while you’re on your vacation. It’s also a good plan to make certain your suggested maintenance is up to date!
- Bring extra batteries: Having your hearing aids quit on the first day is the worst! Remember to bring some spare batteries. So are you allowed to take spare batteries on a plane? The precise rules and guidelines will depend on the airline. You might be required to put your batteries in your carry-on depending on the kind of battery.
Tips for traveling with hearing aids
Finally, it’s time to hit the road now that all the preparation and planning have been done! Or, well, the airways, maybe. Before you head out to the airport, there are a number of things about going on a plane with hearing aids you should definitely know about.
- If I wear my hearing aids more than normal, is that ok? Most hearing specialists will suggest that you use your hearing aids all day, every day. So you should be using your hearing aids anytime you’re not in a really loud place, swimming, or showering.
- Should I be aware of my rights? It’s not a bad idea! In general, it’s good to familiarize yourself with your rights before you travel. Under the American Disabilities Act, people with hearing loss have many special rights. But basically, it boils down to this: information must be accessible to you. Talk to an airport official about a solution if you suspect you are missing some information and they should be able to help.
- Will my smartphone be helpful? Your smartphone is extremely useful, not surprisingly. After you land, you can use this device to change the settings on your hearing aid (if you have the correct type of hearing aid), get directions to your destination, and even translate foreign languages. You may be able to take some strain off your ears if you’re able to utilize your phone like this.
- When I’m in the airport, how well will I be able to hear? That depends, some airports are really noisy during certain times of the day. But most modern airports will have a telecoil device setup throughout many areas. This device is specially made to help individuals who have hearing aids hear their environment better.
- Can I use my hearing aids while I’m on the plane? When they tell you it’s time to off your electronic devices, you won’t be required to turn your hearing aids off. But it’s a good idea to enable flight mode if your hearing aid relies heavily on Bluetooth connectivity or wifi. Some of the in-flight announcements could be hard to hear so be certain that you let the flight attendants know about your hearing loss.
- Do I need to take out my hearing aids when I go through TSA security? You can wear your hearing aids through the security screening process. It’s generally a good idea to tell the TSA agents that you’re wearing them. If there is any type of conveyor belt or X-ray machines, make sure your hearing aids do not go through that belt. Conveyor-belt style X-ray machines can produce a static charge that can damage your hearing aids.
Life is an adventure, and that includes vacations
Whether you have loss of hearing or not, vacations are hard to predict. Sometimes, the train can go off the rails. That’s why it’s essential that you have a positive attitude and treat your vacation like you’re taking on the unexpected.
That way you’ll still feel like your plans are moving in the right direction even when the inevitable obstacle happens.
However, the flip side to that is that preparation can make a difference. With the correct preparation, you can make sure you have options when something goes wrong, so an inconvenience doesn’t grow into a disaster.
Getting a hearing examination and making certain you have the correct equipment is usually the beginning of that preparation for people with hearing loss. And whether you’re taking vacation number one (sightseeing in the city), or vacation number two (chilling on a tropical beach somewhere), this advice will still hold.
Want to be certain you can hear the big world out there but still have concerns? Schedule an appointment with us for a hearing exam!