Gilberts Audiology & Hearing Aid Center - Oklahoma

Senior couple with hearing loss watching photos from travel on digital camera during vacation

There are a couple of types of vacations, right? There’s the type where you jam every single recreation you can into every waking moment. These are the trips that are recalled for years later and are full of adventure, and you head back to work more exhausted than you left.

Then there are the relaxing kinds of vacations. You might not even do much of anything on this kind of vacation. Perhaps you drink a bit of wine. Perhaps you spend a day (or two, or three) on the beach. Or maybe you spend your whole vacation at some sort of resort, getting pampered the whole time. These types of vacations will leave you quite rested and recharged.

There’s no right or wrong way to vacation. But untreated hearing loss can jeopardize whichever kind of vacation you take.

Your vacation can be ruined by hearing loss

There are some unique ways that hearing loss can make a vacation more challenging, particularly if you don’t recognize you have hearing loss. Look, hearing loss can sneak up on you like nobody’s business, many individuals have no clue they have it. The volume on all their devices just continues going up and up.

The good news is that there are some tried and tested ways to reduce the impact hearing loss might have on your vacation. The first step, of course, will be to schedule a hearing screening if you haven’t already. The more prepared you are before you go, the easier it will be to lessen any power hearing loss could have over your fun, rest, and relaxation.

How can your vacation be effected by hearing loss

So how can hearing loss negatively effect your next vacation? Well, there are a couple of ways. And while some of them might seem a bit insignificant at first, they have a tendency to add up! Here are a few common instances:

  • Language barriers become even more challenging: It’s difficult enough to contend with a language barrier. But untreated hearing loss can make it even more difficult to understand voices (especially in a noisy situation).
  • You can miss important moments with family and friends: Maybe your friend just told a hilarious 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.
  • 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 bustling street sounds or singing birds.
  • Important notices come in but you frequently miss them: Perhaps you’re waiting for your train or plane to board, but you never hear the announcement. This can cast your entire vacation timing out of whack.

Some of these negative situations can be prevented by simply using your hearing aids. So, managing your hearing needs is the ideal way to keep your vacation on track.

How to get ready for your vacation when you have hearing loss

That doesn’t mean that you can’t go on vacation if you have hearing loss. That’s nowhere near true! But with a little additional planning and preparation, your vacation can still be fun and fairly stress-free. Of course, that’s rather common travel advice regardless of how good your hearing is.

You can be sure that hearing loss won’t have a negative impact on your vacation, here are a few things you can do:

  • Pre-planning is a smart idea: When you need to figure things out on the fly, that’s when hearing loss can present some difficulties, so don’t be too spontaneous and prepare as much as possible.
  • Keep your hearing aids clean: Before you head out on your travels, make sure you clean your hearing aids. This can help avoid problems from happening while you’re on your vacation. Keeping your hearing aids on their scheduled maintenance is also a smart idea.
  • Pack extra batteries: There’s nothing worse than your hearing aid dying the first day because your batteries quit. Remember to bring some spare batteries. So are you allowed to take spare batteries on a plane? The exact rules and guidelines will depend on the airline. Some kinds of batteries need to be kept in your carry-on.

Tips for traveling with hearing aids

Once all the preparation and planning is done, it’s time to hit the road! Or possibly it’s the airways. Before you go out to the airport, there are a few things about flying with hearing aids you should definitely know about.

  • Is it ok to use my hearing aids longer than usual? Most hearing specialists will suggest that you wear your hearing aids all day, every day. So, any time you aren’t in bed, taking a shower, or swimming (or in an extremely loud setting), you should be wearing your devices.
  • Is it ok to fly with hearing aids in? When they announce that it’s time to off your electronic devices, you won’t be required to turn your hearing aids off. But it’s a good idea to activate flight mode if your hearing aid heavily relies on Bluetooth connectivity or wifi. You might also want to let the flight attendants know you have hearing loss, as there may be announcements during the flight that are difficult to hear.
  • Do I have to take my hearing aids out when I go through TSA security? You can wear your hearing aids through the security screening process. That being said, letting the TSA agents know you’re wearing hearing aids is always a good idea. If there is any type of conveyor belt or X-ray machines, be certain that your hearing aids don’t go through that belt. Your hearing aids can be damaged by the static charge that these conveyor style X-ray devices generate.
  • Will my smartphone be helpful? Your smartphone is really useful, not surprisingly. You can utilize your smartphone to get directions to your destination, translate foreign languages, and if you have the correct type of hearing aid, you can utilize your smartphone to adjust your settings to your new environment. If your phone is capable of doing all that (and you know how to use all those apps), it may take some stress off your ears.
  • Should I know my rights? It’s a good idea! Generally, it’s good to familiarize yourself with your rights before you go. Under the American Disabilities Act, individuals with hearing loss have lots of special rights. But basically, it boils down to this: information must be accessible to you. Talk to an airport official about a solution if you think you’re missing some information and they should be able to help.
  • When I’m in the airport, how well will I be able to hear? That depends, some airports are really noisy during certain times of the day. But a telecoil device will normally be installed in many areas of most modern airports. This is a basic wire device (although you’ll never see that wire, just look for the signs) that makes it easier for you to hear with your hearing aids, even when things are loud and chaotic.

Life is an adventure, and that includes vacations

Vacations are unpredictable with or without hearing loss. Not everything is going to go the way you planned it all the time. So be prepared for the unexpected and try to have a positive mindset.

That way, when something unexpected takes place (and it will), it’ll seem like it’s all part of the plan!

But you will be surprised less if you put together good preparations. With the correct preparation, you can make sure you have options when something goes awry, so an inconvenience doesn’t grow into a catastrophe.

For those with hearing loss, this preparation frequently begins by getting your hearing assessed and making sure you have the hardware and care you need. And that’s the case whether you’re visiting every museum in New York City (vacation type number one) or lounging around on a beach in Mexico (vacation type number two).

Still have some questions or concerns? Call us today!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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