Over 37 million adults have hearing loss in the U.S. which means that you are not alone in your hearing loss journey. Whether you are just starting to admit the problem or are actively treating your hearing loss, you can benefit from meeting and speaking with others who share your condition. You might even be surprised to find a familiar face in the crowd.

Although stepping out and seeking others with hearing loss may seem scary at first, there are a lot of benefits to you for doing so, such as:

  • Finding a group of peers who know exactly what you are feeling
  • Reducing anxiety or fear about discussing your problem
  • Gaining a sense of belonging and opening up a new channel of support
  • Receiving input from others about navigating your hearing loss and treatment options
  • Learning more about different hearing aid technology and devices
  • Hearing practical every day advice about wearing hearing aids from other users

Seeking out a hearing loss support group can even help you adjust more quickly and cope more easily with your hearing loss.

How to get started? First reach out to a close friend or trusted family member. Sometimes that first conversation with someone can lift a huge weight off your shoulders and reduce stress. Don’t be afraid to ask them for support – perhaps they know of a hearing care professional to recommend or would be willing to come to your appointments or they may even be experiencing the same issues as you. It is important to have someone to lean on and to talk to throughout your hearing loss journey. Next, ask your hearing care professional about support groups and organizations that they would recommend. For example, the Hearing Loss Association of America has many local chapters that provide groups, speakers and opportunities to socialize.

Reaching out to other adults with hearing loss can help you become more informed about the condition and its treatments and provide you more emotional support as you work to improve your own hearing health.