For those without hearing issues understanding how different the world can be for those with a hearing impairment is a difficult proposition. You might say that until you have walked in their shoes you can’t understand the pebble. Hearing problems come in many different forms and each type of hearing issue can present its own set of challenges.
The one thing they all have in common though is that they make life more difficult. Both for the hearing impaired and those around them. Communicating may no longer be as natural and effortless as it once was. And, just to be completely honest it can be mentally exhausting.
When you have a hearing impairment it can take real mental effort to focus on what is happening around you or being said to you. Particularly in noisy situations like where this is heavy traffic or in restaurants where the conversations at nearby tables may create a buzzing background sound.
For the hearing impaired, the entire process of hearing becomes altered. If you have normal hearing it takes place of three mental levels, as a reflex that we rarely notice is filtering all the noise around us, in the auditory cortex where those sounds that pass the initial filters get classified and then in the rest of the brains if the cortex determines that it is worth paying attention to and warrants a response.
With a hearing impairment, you often have to consciously bypass the first two steps in the process. Your focus has to be brought to bear on what is happening around you and particularly to people’s speech.
Despite how we may view our own minds, brain power is a finite resource. There is only so much to go around. Try focusing on two thoughts at the same time. If you can, you’re an exceptional person. For most people, this is a near-impossible task. Now think about how difficult it must be for someone with hearing issues to not only have to focus on what is being said to them but to try and process and retain what they are hearing.
Feel free to contact our Team to discuss in more detail how you can help and understand the hearing impaired.