Driving is one of the best ways for many senior citizens to maintain their independence. However, when driving, if you have hearing loss, you may be unnecessarily placing yourself or others in danger.
If you’re new to hearing aids, congrats on taking the first steps toward a more independent life! Hearing aids take some getting used to, but it’s critical to keep them in when driving. Here are some crucial driving safety precautions for you to remember when wearing your new hearing aids.
When driving, always wear your hearing aid.
Make sure you don’t get behind the wheel without your hearing aids if you wear them. Keep in mind how the environment in your car can affect the performance of your hearing aids. Rather than driving with the windows open, use your car’s climate control system to maintain a comfortable temperature. If the roar from an open window swamps your hearing aid with sound, it will lose its effectiveness, limiting your hearing and putting you and everyone else on the road at risk.
Only drive when you are confident in your ability to do so.
If your hearing loss makes you feel uneasy while driving, it’s better to put your keys down. When you’re worried, you’re more likely to make risky mistakes, so only drive when you’re confident and safe. Make adjustments to account for your physical changes. Consult your doctor if stiffness and pain bother you and prevent you from driving safely. Exercise can also aid with stiffness and keep your reflexes in good working order.
Inside the vehicle, keep things quiet.
Hearing in noise is considerably more complex than hearing in silence. Make sure the inside of your car is as quiet as possible to keep yourself safe on the road. Turn off the radio and refrain from using your telephone. It’s enjoyable to listen to music while driving, but the music may drown out vital traffic sounds and reduce your reaction time to events on the road. When your safety and the safety of others are at stake, don’t take such chances.
It’s critical to maintain your attention to what’s happening outside of the car. If you’re traveling with other people, keep talks to a minimum and ask them not to speak until it’s essential. With hearing aids, it’s much more difficult to multitask while driving, and you’ll be too focused on the discussion to notice the sounds outside the vehicle.
Maintain your vehicle regularly.
Strange noises are a standard indicator that something is wrong with your automobile. You run the danger of driving an unsafe vehicle if you can’t hear when something is wrong with your engine. To ensure that your car is in good working order, keep routine maintenance. Ensure that your brakes and turn signals are in good working order.
Regular hearing tests should be scheduled.
To drive safely, you must be able to hear clearly. Every year, we recommend that you test your hearing to ensure that you can hear the traffic noises, horns, children playing, and warning sirens that occur on the road around you. Thoreya Audiology recommends that persons who wear hearing aids get an annual hearing test to ensure they are working to their full potential.
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Hearing aids are essential while driving since they ensure that we hear all of the sounds on the road. Driving necessitates good observational skills, some of which are related to your auditory abilities, but none of this precludes you from driving if you have hearing loss.
According to the Center for Hearing and Communication, over 48 million people in the United States suffer from hearing loss, with a large percentage of them continuing to drive. According to one study, those who drive with hearing loss are more visually aware of what’s going on and, on average, more cautious than people who have normal hearing.