Travelling Abroad with Hearing Impairment

Travelling Abroad with Hearing Impairment

Hearing loss is a challenging problem in and of itself, but the challenges increase once you decide to travel to a foreign country where native speakers speak a foreign language. In such situations it is important to practice good listening habits so that you can communicate effectively, despite your hearing problem.

Use context clues to help figure out what you want to communicate and what someone else is saying to you. The language barrier can be overcome using hand gestures and other non-verbal clues.

It is important to realize that the stigma of suffering from a disability such as hearing loss can be more prevalent in foreign countries, such as in Latin America. This can make it challenging to admit that you have a hearing impairment and might deter you from asking for help to accommodate your hearing problem. Respecting and accepting that different cultures have different norms will be able to help put you at ease so that you do not feel out of place.

The best way to deal with your hearing problem in a foreign culture is to first be comfortable in your own skin. Accept your disability in every manner so that you do not feel awkward and out of place in a foreign land, which can be daunting in and of itself without adding hearing loss to the mix.

Take your hearing loss in your stride while communicating with foreigners instead of making a big deal out of it. Others will only be as uncomfortable about it as you are. Utilize your facial expressions and send out friendly smiles and gesticulate warmly and effectively so that people have no difficulty in understanding you. With time you will find that your hearing impairment is no longer as disruptive as you initially believed.

Before travelling to a foreign country, first take precautionary measures to prepare for your trip. Ensure your hearing aids are in proper working conditions and that you have enough batteries to last you for your entire trip. Also make sure that you come up with some effective coping strategies for communicating nonverbally. Practice these communicative methods with someone at home to make sure they are able to understand you, so that you are familiar with various methods of communication prior to your departure.

Hearing loss need not deter you from taking a trip to an exotic, foreign land. Just make sure you take some simple, precautionary and preparatory steps to make your trip a comfortable and memorable one.