Communication Guidelines For Successful Interactions
Few people with normal hearing know how to speak to individuals with hearing loss. People with hearing loss must provide feedback to their communication partners.
The following are some Communication Guidelines to ensure successful communication interactions.
The Listener Can...
- Provide feedback: tell your partner what you hear, and tell them what they can do better to communicate with you.
- Pay attention: concentration is very important.
- Observe the talker: what you see supplements what you hear.
- Plan ahead: anticipate possible challenges.
- Take breaks if needed: listening with a hearing loss can be tiring.
- Double check details: repeating what you understood can prevent confusion.
- Set realistic expectations: some situations are too noisy to expect to understand speech-even with the best hearing instruments.
- No bluffing! Avoid pretending to understand something when you didn't.
The Talker Can...
- Get the listener's attention: wait until they are ready to listen, so then you might not have to repeat yourself.
- Don't shout: talking too loudly can make things worse.
- Slow down: talking more slowly can make your voice easier to understand.
- Get closer: moving close can help make you easier to understand.
- Speak clearly: don't exaggerate pronunciation, but DO finish all the sounds in each word.
- Rephrase: use different wording.
- State the topic: tell the listener what topic you are about to discuss so that they know the context of the conversation.
- Notice background sounds: turn down the TVs & radios when speaking.
- Confirm details: double check that the listener understood all the pieces of the message.
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