If You’re Going to the Hospital…
A hospital stay is stressful for anyone. If you have a hearing loss, the normal stress of the hospital setting can be intensified by the communication difficulties caused by hearing loss. Remember, hearing loss is an invisible condition and is often misunderstood. Doctors. nurses, aides, and other staff may not be aware of your hearing difficulties. A key to overcoming this is clear, two-way communication between you and your health care professionals.
Take care . . . hearing aids have a tendency to get lost during hospital stays!
Tips for you and your family
Be sure to tell the admissions office, the nursing station, and the nurses and aides that you have a hearing loss. Don’t assume they know!
Ask that the International Symbol for Hearing Impairment be placed on your chart, on your wristband, above your bed, and on your door, as a reminder to the hospital staff.
If you have spare hearing aids, use them rather than your newer ones. Hearing aids have a tendency to get lost during hospital stays!
Place your hearing aids in a special container with your name on it for safekeeping when you’re not using them.
Ask for assistive listening devices for the television and telephone (or bring your own). Try using the built-in captioning available on the television set (usually accessible through the remote control).
Always try to have someone else with you when you’re talking with your doctors.
You and your family can be advocates, explaining to physicians, nurses and others how to make communication easier and more effective for someone with a hearing loss.