Grandma has got hearing problems

My grandmother is seventy years old and she has got difficulty in hearing. She lives alone. So this is a big problem for her. She usually stays in the house almost all day because she cannot go out or interact with people. People have to repeat the same thing several times, which make them frustrated.
We have appointed a maid in order to help her with the household works. She is telling that the hearing capability of my grandma is declining every day. She also suggested taking her to a clinic which provides hearing healthcare services in Toronto.
Apart from hearing aids, what are the possible treatment options available in order to reduce hearing loss? Please give some genuine replies and suggestions. Thanks in advance.

Listen to the maid, she clearly has the most regular interaction with your grandmother. If it’s obvious that she needs a hearing aid, perhaps the correct approach is to not look for alternatives?

First thing to do is to get her a hearing test and see what her hearing loss is and make sure it’s able to be addressed with either hearing aids or other solutions. No one can suggest a solution until they know how bad her hearing is.

My first impression is the maid’s remarks are hyperbole. If you think she’s correct, see an ENT. Without history he won’t be able to say if it is failing at a rapid rate but can test her hearing. The rapid rate claim will concern him and he’s like to order an MRI to eliminate possibly serious problems.

Do you think the maid mighe be an undercover agent for a local AuD? Does mother have any physical ailments other than being 70?

I agree with getting her seen. Probably first thing that should be done is look in her ears and see if they’re plugged with earwax. It does happen.

Lots of great suggestions here! I feel for your gramma, cuz I, too, was in that boat - only in my teens, not 70. At any age, the inability to HEAR does two main things: leads to social isolation and feelings of paranoia (why is everyone muttering to embarrass me?), and early DEMENTIA - seriously. There are many studies out there to show that hearing loss over time leads to loss of word processing, conversation, and eventually decline in mental ability. I’ve seen that happen first-hand in a few senior relatives of mine.

My own personal experience: several years ago, one of my aids just wasn’t performing well for a year or more. I finally got in to see an audiologist (after driving my hubs NUTS with repeating himself), and learned that the aid needed fixing. During that 1.5 yr time, my word recognition score in that ear dropped from high 80 percent to about FIFTY PERCENT. That is a pretty precipitous decline. But after the aid was repaired, within a year, that ear’s word recognition was right back up to 80%.

Hearing loss sneaks up on a person. There are also issues of DENIAL. Our society discriminates against those who can’t hear cuz they can not communicate! Wouldn’t your gramma want to maintain her hearing and enjoy precious time with YOU, her other kids and grandkids? If not, her social isolation has progressed too far already.

I hope you’ll share these insights with your gram - she’s new to the game, and believe me, you don’t just run out, buy aids and everything’s A-OK. It takes persistence and follow-on appointments to get the SOUND to the individual’s preference. She may be overwhelmed with all the sounds she’s already been missing … so it’s going to be an adjustment. I think it’s a necessity for one’s own safety (hearing a car come, not stepping in someone’s way, hearing a teapot whistle - even a fire alarm!) as well as for social interaction.

GOOD LUCK getting the message across.

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