There are a couple of kinds of vacations, right? One type is Packed with activities at all times. This type will leave you more tired than when you left but all of the adventures will be recalled for many years to come.
Then there are the relaxing types of vacations. You might not even do much of anything on this type of vacation. Maybe you drink some wine. Maybe you spend a day (or two, or three) on the beach. Or maybe you’re getting pampered at some resort for your entire vacation. These types of vacations will leave you quite rested and recharged.
There’s no right or wrong way to vacation. Whatever way you prefer, however, untreated hearing loss can put your vacation at risk.
Hearing loss can ruin a vacation
There are some unique ways that hearing loss can make a vacation more challenging, especially if you don’t know you have hearing loss. Look, hearing loss can sneak up on you like nobody’s business, many individuals have no clue they have it. They just keep cranking the volume on their tv up and up and up.
But the impact that hearing loss can have on a vacation can be minimized with some tried and tested strategies, and that’s the good news. The first step, of course, will be to make an appointment for a hearing screening if you haven’t already. The more prepared you are ahead of time, the easier it will be to diminish any power hearing loss might have over your fun, rest, and relaxation.
How can your vacation be impacted by hearing loss
So how can hearing loss negatively effect your next vacation? Well, there are a number of ways. By themselves, they might not seem like that big of a deal. But when they start to compound it can become a real issue. Here are some common examples:
- Language barriers are even more difficult: Coping with a language barrier is already hard enough. But neglected hearing loss can make it even harder to understand voices (especially in a noisy setting).
- You can miss out on the radiance of a new place: Your experience can be rather dull when everything you hear is muted. After all, your favorite vacation spot is alive with unique sounds, like active street sounds or singing birds.
- Important notices come in but you often miss them: Maybe you’re waiting for your train or aircraft to board, but you never hear the announcement. This can cast your entire vacation timing into chaos.
- Special moments with friends and family can be missed: Maybe your friend just told a great joke that everyone enjoyed, except you couldn’t make out the punchline. When you have neglected hearing loss, you can miss important (and enriching) conversations.
Some of these negative situations can be avoided by simply using your hearing aids. Which means the best way to keep your vacation on track and stress free is to take care of your hearing needs before you start.
If you have hearing loss, how can you prepare for your vacation?
All of this doesn’t mean that hearing loss makes a vacation unachievable. Not by any Means! But with a bit of extra planning and preparation, your vacation can still be fun and fairly hassle-free. Whether or not you have hearing loss, this is clearly practical travel advice.
You can be certain that hearing loss won’t have a negative effect on your vacation, here are some things you can do:
- Bring extra batteries: There’s nothing worse than your hearing aid dying the first day because your batteries quit. Always make sure you bring spares! So are you allowed to bring spare batteries on a plane? Well, maybe, consult your airline. Some types of batteries need to be kept in your carry-on.
- Keep your hearing aids clean: Before you leave on your travels, make sure you clean your hearing aids. This can help prevent issues from happening while you’re on your vacation. It’s also a good idea to make certain your recommended maintenance is current!
- Do a little pre-planning: When you have to figure things out on the fly, that’s when hearing loss can present some challenges, so don’t be too spontaneous and prepare as much as you can.
Tips for traveling with hearing aids
Once all the planning and preparation is done, it’s time to hit the road! Or, well, the airways, maybe. Many individuals have questions about flying with hearing aids, and there are certainly some good things to know before you go to the airport.
- Should I be aware of my rights? Before you travel 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 has to be available to you. Talk to an airport official about a solution if you suspect you are missing some info and they should be able to help.
- Is it ok to fly with hearing aids in? When they tell you it’s time to off your electronic devices, you won’t be required to turn your hearing aids off. Having said that, you may want to activate flight mode on hearing aids that rely heavily on wifi or Bluetooth connectivity. Some of the in-flight announcements may be hard to hear so be certain that you let the flight attendants know about your hearing loss.
- 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 a telecoil device will usually be set up in many areas of most modern airports. This device is specially made to help individuals with hearing aids hear their environment better.
- Do I need to take my hearing aids out when I go through TSA security? You won’t need to remove your hearing aids for the security screening. 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, make sure your hearing aids don’t go through that belt. Conveyor-belt style X-ray machines can produce a static charge that can damage your hearing devices.
- If I use my hearing aids more than normal, is that ok? 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 noisy place, swimming, or showering.
- Will my smartphone be useful? This will not be surprising, but your smartphone is extremely helpful! After you land, you can utilize this device to adjust the settings on your hearing aid (if you have the correct kind of hearing aid), find directions to your destination, and even translate foreign languages. You may be able to take some strain off your ears if you’re able to utilize your phone like this.
Vacations are one of life’s many adventures
Vacations are unpredictable with or without hearing loss. At times, the train can go off the rails. So be prepared for the unexpected and try to have a positive mindset.
That way you’ll still feel as if your plans are on track even when the inevitable obstacle occurs.
But you will be surprised less if you make good preparations. With the correct preparation, you can make sure you have options when something goes wrong, so an inconvenience doesn’t grow into a disaster.
Getting a hearing test and making sure you have the correct equipment is usually the beginning of that preparation for people who have hearing loss. And whether you’re on 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!