Wearing hearing aids can cause a major change in a person’s life. This bears more weight on a kid that has yet to experience and know what life has to offer. For us adults, it is easier to understand what is happening and why it is happening. With kids, it is a more complicated thing.
As their parents, how do you encourage your child to wear hearing aids and help them understand why they have to wear such devices? Here are some helpful tips that you may want to consider.
1. Make it a special day.
Firsts are often celebrated. First birthday, first haircut, or first outing with the family. First time wearing a hearing aid should also be celebrated. Do something special with them like getting ice cream or going to the park.
2. Show them how it looks like.
Parents are often given a dummy hearing aid along with the actual hearing aid. You can use this to give your children an initial glimpse of how an actual device will look like. This will help you out in preparing your kids for the real deal. Start by explaining to them in a manner that is easy to understand.
3. Slowly increase wear time of hearing aids.
This change in their lifestyle will need some getting used to. At first, your children may only feel comfortable wearing them for a few hours or even a few minutes. Don’t pressure them. Understand their situation and allow them to take some time off. Slowly, everyday, increase their wear time from, let’s say, a few minutes to an hour. Increase it constantly until such time that they are already used to wearing hearing aids the whole day.
4. Make it a normal routine.
Think of wearing their hearing aids as prescription glasses. People who wear glasses often pick them up first thing in the morning. That’s how essential it is for their daily functioning. Make it a part of your children’s routine. If the first thing that they do in the morning is make their bed and brush their teeth, try adding “putting on hearing aids” to that list. And of course, at night, see to it that they remember to properly remove and set it aside.
5. Don’t let them feel different.
As they grow, they would realize that not everyone is in the same situation as theirs. They may possibly feel ashamed, frustrated, or even sad. Reassurance is key. Let them know that it’s okay to be this way—being different is not a bad thing.
You may also try introducing them to people who have achieved great things despite having outward differences. This character can be someone for them to look up to.
6. Be involved in their hearing test.
Along with their hearing aids, they would need to get regular tests to see how they are doing with their devices. Make sure to always be with them during these times. Let them know that you are involved and you are supporting them every step of the way.
7. Start with soft sounds.
As stated, hearing aids may need some getting used to. You wouldn’t want them to hear loud noises all of a sudden. Start off with silent sounds such as being in the living room or during meals. Slowly ease your way to your garden or to a park. Then, if you think they’re ready, you may try bringing them to the mall or use their device for conversations with many people.
8. Introduce them to other kids with the same situation.
Broaden their support system by approaching parents with kids who are also wearing hearing aids. Try letting your child and theirs mingle with each other. This can serve as a comfortable space for your kid.
May these tips be able to help you encourage your child to wear their hearing aids. Always remember that they won’t be able to go through this without your support. Above all these tips, your love for your child is the best support you can ever give to them!
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