As you’re rushing around this holiday season, picking up just the right gifts for all the loved ones in your life, don’t forget to take into consideration the unique needs of every person. For the ones you love who live with hearing loss, you may want to take a moment to consider what kind of gifts are best, and which items to avoid.
Depending on the scope and degree of hearing loss your loved one has, some gift ideas may be better suited than others. Here are some points to consider when you’re looking for gift inspiration this holiday season.
Manipulatives such as building blocks or magnet tiles are an excellent gift for children with hearing loss because interacting with them is not dependent on any audio cues. Children can build together in a naturally quieter setting since their attention is focused more on building and less on talking or loud play.
Cochlear Implant and Hearing Aid Accessories
Many children are naturally self-conscious wearing any assistive listening device because it’s one more thing that makes them stand out from the crowd. Decorating their hearing devices may help them have a more positive, accepting outlook on their hearing aids or cochlear implants.
A myriad of decorative options is available from stickers to charms, to covers, and gems. A child with a hearing aid or cochlear implant may enjoy having a few to choose from so they can change them out just as they would earrings, hair bands, or jewelry.
For Mom, Dad, Grandma, or Grandpa living with hearing loss, assistive hearing devices may be something that takes some time for them to adjust. The stigma that accompanies hearing aids is lessening but is still strong with the older population. Seniors may be more resistant, or forgetful about using their devices.
A great gift choice for reluctant or forgetful hearing aid users are items such as brightly colored hearing aid cases so that the devices are not easily misplaced, an extra hearing aid as a back up when the first one is misplaced, or a hearing aid battery calendar with extra batteries so that the device maintains its operability.
Many people who are the social butterflies in your life have a particularly hard time adjusting to hearing loss. They may begin to feel depressed by the restrictions hearing loss places on them. They may start to avoid the social situations they used to love so much.
A gift option worth considering for these loved ones is Bluetooth enabled hearing aids that work via smartphone apps. Next time you go out for dinner with friends, your loved one can place the smartphone in the center of the table and receive clear speech sounds from all parties at the table through their Bluetooth enable hearing aid. This technology boosts the current capability of the hearing aid by targeting the sounds of conversation at the table.
It also helps with other situations such as hearing the TV at a reasonable level or having a phone conversation without having to turn the phone volume up to the max setting.