We take our ability to hear for granted. But, when we encounter new and unfamiliar situations, that’s the time we count on our ability to hear. And there’s no more important time to make sure you can hear than when you are faced with an emergency situation.
Most people with a hearing loss have had a gradual decline in their ability to hear. As their hearing slowly changes, they “make do” in part because of the familiarity of their surroundings. New situations, new settings, and new people are more difficult for anyone but especially hard for someone who can’t hear. They are already spending a significant amount of energy trying to understand what’s being said in a non-stressful setting. An emergency or crisis creates additional stress making it that much more difficult for some already struggling to hear.
Natural disasters occur frequently and often with little warning. Personal disasters happen every day (house fires, medical emergencies and so on). The fear and frustration expressed by individuals in the aftermath of a natural disaster or a personal crisis is felt by anyone watching the crisis unfold either first hand or via the media.
If you or someone you know has a hearing loss, and you have yet to do anything about it, don’t let a natural disaster or personal emergency serve as a wake-up call. There are any number of times when you may be impacted by events beyond your control. At that moment you will want to be able to understand what’s going on around you and to communicate with any number of unfamiliar people in potentially unfamiliar settings. An already stressful situation will now be compounded by your or your loved ones inability to hear. If you or your loved one has a problem hearing, now is the time to do something about it before the unimaginable becomes a reality.