The holidays are a time for celebration with family and friends. But for deaf loved ones, they can often be a frustrating experience. This is because many deaf people feel left out when they can’t participate in the conversations and festivities going on around them. Have any of your family members suffered from age-related hearing loss or damage to their inner ear? Here are five tips to follow in order to make sure that deaf loved ones can enjoy the holidays just as much as everyone else.
1. Be mindful of your noise level: This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s important to remember that deaf people often have difficulty understanding conversation and other activities when there is too much background noise. Try to keep the volume down at family gatherings and parties, so your deaf loved ones don’t have to strain their ears in order to follow conversations.
2. Make sure there is plenty of seating available: It can be difficult for deaf people to socialize when they are constantly on their feet or in a standing position. This is especially important for events where standing up might be required, such as concerts or plays. To ensure deaf individuals have a comfortable and accessible experience, consider reserving a few rows just for deaf members of the audience. Providing comfortable seating will ensure that deaf loved ones have an enjoyable time and are able to take part in the festivities without feeling excluded.
3. Provide subtitles or closed captions when possible: If you’re watching a movie, playing music, or engaging in any other kind of audio-based activity, make sure deaf loved ones can still participate by providing subtitles or closed captions for them to follow along. Subtitles or closed captions are texts that appear on the screen during video or audio playback, allowing deaf individuals to follow along with the conversation. This can be especially helpful during movies, plays, and television shows where deaf people don’t have to miss out on any of the entertainment.
4. Designate a quiet space: Although deaf people can still enjoy conversations and other activities with background noise, it’s a good idea to provide a quieter area where deaf loved ones can retreat to if they need some peace and quiet. This could be an outdoor terrace or balcony away from the loud music, or it could be a separate room with comfortable chairs where deaf individuals can relax and chat while away from the noise.
5. Bring along some hearing loss-friendly snacks: It’s always nice to have something tasty on hand for deaf loved ones to snack on during the festivities. Look for snacks that are specifically designed for people with hearing loss, such as sugar-free candy, deaf-friendly chips and popcorn, and other treats that don’t require hearing in order to enjoy.
By following these tips, deaf loved ones can feel included during the holidays. With a little extra effort, everyone can come together and have a great time celebrating this special time of year!
Being mindful of your noise level and providing deaf individuals with subtitles or closed captions when possible, you can help make the holiday season more enjoyable for deaf friends and family members. So make sure to keep deafness and hearing loss in mind during your holiday gatherings, and spread the joy of the season. Happy Holidays!🎄
Have you ever attended an event where deafness was an obstacle? Let us know in the comments below! deaf loved ones can enjoy the holidays just like everyone else with a little bit of preparation.