Hearing Health Blog

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

There are a couple of kinds of vacations, right? One type is Packed with activities at all times. These are the trips that are remembered for years later and are packed with adventure, and you head back to work more worn out than you left.

Then there are the relaxing kinds of vacations. You might not even do much of anything on this kind of vacation. Maybe you spend the entire time on the beach with some cocktails. Or possibly you spend your entire vacation at some sort of resort, getting spoiled the whole time. These types of vacations will leave you really rested and recharged.

Everybody has their own idea of the perfect vacation. But neglected hearing loss can put a damper on whichever kind of vacation you take.

Hearing loss can ruin a vacation

Your vacation can become a difficulty if you have hearing loss, particularly if you don’t know you have it. Look, hearing loss can creep up on you like nobody’s business, many people have no clue they have it. The volume on all their devices just keeps going up and up.

The nice thing is that there are some proven ways to lessen the effect hearing loss could have on your vacation. Scheduling a hearing exam is obviously the first step. The more prepared you are before you go, the easier it will be to diminish any power hearing loss could have over your fun, rest, and relaxation.

How can hearing loss impact your vacation

So how can your next vacation be adversely impacted by hearing loss? There are actually a small number of ways as it turns out. And while some of them might seem a little trivial at first, they have a tendency to add up! Here are a few common instances:

  • Special experiences with friends and relatives can be missed: Everyone loved the funny joke that your friend just told, but unfortunately, you didn’t hear 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 as well. After all, your favorite vacation place is alive with unique sounds, like active street sounds or singing birds.
  • Essential notices come in but you often miss them: Maybe you’re waiting for your train or plane to board, but you don’t ever hear the announcement. And as a result, your entire vacation schedule is thrown into total disarray.
  • Language barriers are even more challenging: Dealing with a language barrier is already difficult enough. But untreated hearing loss can make it even harder to decipher voices (especially in a noisy situation).

Some of these negative outcomes can be prevented by simply wearing your hearing aids. So, taking care of your hearing needs is the best way to keep your vacation on track.

How to prepare for your vacation when you’re dealing with hearing loss

That doesn’t mean that you can’t go on vacation if you have hearing loss. Not by any Means! But it does mean that, when you have hearing loss, a little bit of extra planning and preparation, can help make sure your vacation goes as easily as possible. Of course, that’s pretty common travel advice regardless of how strong your hearing is.

You can be sure that hearing loss won’t have a negative effect on your vacation, here are some things you can do:

  • Keep your hearing aids clean: It’s a good plan to make certain your hearing aids are clean and functioning properly before you hop on a plane, train, or automobile. This can help prevent problems from developing while you’re on your vacation. Keeping your hearing aids on their regular maintenance is also a smart plan.
  • Pack extra batteries: Having your hearing aids quit on the first day is the worst! Don’t forget to bring some spare batteries. Now, you may be thinking: can I bring spare batteries in my luggage? Well, maybe, check with your airline. You might be required to store your batteries in your carry-on depending on the type of battery.
  • Do a little pre-planning: When you have to figure things out on the fly, that’s when hearing loss can present some difficulties, so don’t be too spontaneous and plan as much as possible.

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 maybe it’s the airways. Before you go out to the airport, there are a few things about flying with hearing aids you should definitely know about.

  • Is it ok to fly with hearing aids in? When they announce that it’s time to turn off your electronic devices, you won’t need to turn your hearing aids off. But it’s a good plan to activate flight mode if your hearing aid heavily relies on Bluetooth connectivity or wifi. Some of the in-flight announcements may be difficult to hear so make sure you tell the flight attendant about your hearing loss.
  • When I go through the TSA security checkpoint, will I be required to remove my hearing aids? You can keep your hearing aids in when you go through the security screening process. Having said that, telling the TSA agents you’re wearing hearing aids is always a good idea. If there is any kind of conveyor belt or X-ray machines, be certain that your hearing aids don’t go through that belt. Conveyor-belt style X-ray machines can create a static charge that can damage your hearing aids.
  • Will I be able to hear well in the airport? How well you can hear in the airport will depend on what airport it is and what time of day. But most modern airports will have a telecoil device setup throughout many areas. This is a simple wire device (although 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 have some rights I need to be aware of? Before you leave it’s not a bad plan to get familiar with your rights. Under the American Disabilities Act, individuals with hearing loss have lots of special rights. But essentially, it comes down to this: information must be accessible to you. So if you think you’re missing out on some info, let an airport official know that you have hearing loss and they should offer help.
  • Will my smartphone be useful? This will not be surprising, but your smartphone is very useful! You can use your smartphone to find directions to your destination, translate foreign languages, and if you have the right type of hearing aid, you can use your smartphone to adjust your settings to your new environment. If your phone is capable of doing all that (and you know how to use all those apps), it may take some stress off your ears.
  • Is it ok to use my hearing aids longer than usual? Hearing aids are designed to be worn every day, all day. So you should be using your hearing aids anytime you aren’t in an extremely loud place, swimming, or showering.

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. That’s why it’s essential that you have a positive mindset and manage your vacation like you’re embracing the unanticipated.

That way, when something unforeseen takes place (and it will), it’ll seem like it’s all part of the plan!

However, the flip side to that is that preparation can make a difference. With the right preparation, you can be 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 right equipment is commonly 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 guidance will still hold.

Still have some questions or concerns? Schedule an appointment with us for a hearing test!

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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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