Hearing Loss News-Hearing Better In A Masked World



Are You Experiencing Sudden Hearing Loss Linked to COVID-19?

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Wearing a face mask has been an essential tool
in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19, but it
has also made communicating more challenging,
especially for people with hearing loss. Conversations
may be muffled, and facial expressions and lip
movements are hidden, making it difficult to speak
and to listen. Here, local experts provide easy
strategies to help you communicate and listen
more effectively in a masked world.

Speak at a slightly higher volume
“Studies show masks attenuate (lower the
volume of) the higher frequencies, and depending
on the mask, it can be anywhere from three to 12
decibels,” said Dr. Jennifer Savickis, doctor of
audiology at Ear Works Audiology in Port Jefferson
Station. “Higher frequencies are responsible for
beginning and ends of words.” She suggests
speaking slower and enunciating each word.

Get your listener’s attention
Be sure to talk directly to the listener without
turning away. “It’s easier to respond to a statement
or question if you’re ready to listen,” said Dr. Debra
Gargano, audiologist and hearing instrument
specialist at Miracle-Ear in Garden City. “If you’re
looking away or distracted you might miss the
beginning of the sentence. When facing one
another there is less effort to listen and it’s easier
to participate in the conversation.”
Use facial expressions and hand
Our eyes are very expressive, said Savickis. “I
remember when the pandemic first began, I would
come home from work and tell my husband how
tired my eyes were from having them smile at
everyone all day,” she said. “Also use hand
gestures to point out an item you’re speaking
about or in the direction you want them to go.”
Converse in a quiet environment
Background noise can be distracting. “Competing
noises can make it hard to hear clearly for a normal
hearing person but especially for someone with hearing
loss,” said Gargano. She suggests lowering the TV
or radio and staying away from someone else’s
conversation so you can hear yours more clearly.

Cup your hand around your ear
“By placing your hand around your ear, you are
creating almost a larger ear, which can capture the
voice that is speaking and direct it into the ear,”
said Savickis.
Rephrase your statement or question
If someone does not understand the first time
you say something, reword your thought for a
better chance at communicating, said Gargano.
“Adding body language such as raising your
eyebrows or nodding your head can be helpful,”
she said.



If you or someone you care for has had Covid-19 and are experiencing signs of bearing loss simply call us direct to schedule a complimentary audiology screening.

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If you or someone you know is showing signs of hearing loss such as blasting the television volume or is having trouble following conversations, it may be time to get your hearing examined.

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Or simply call us direct to schedule a complimentary audiology screening.
☎️ Nassau: 516-248-0068 | Suffolk: 631-332-3274