What a Speaker Can Do to Improve Communication with a Listener Who Has a Hearing Loss

  1. Get the listener’s attention by saying the listener’s name or using physical contact. Wait for a verbal response or eye contact before you start speaking.
  2. Face the listener directly and in close proximity. Lip movements and gestures add important information. 
  3. Do not talk from another room or at the listener’s back. 
  4. Speak in a normal, strong voice without shouting or exaggerating lip movements. Light should be shining on your face rather than behind you. 
  5. Speak in complete sentences rather than isolated words, providing additional information. 
  6. Decrease background noise during conversation. Mute the television, roll up the car window, turn off the running water or fan, etc. 
  7. If you think the listener didn’t catch what you said, be sure and ask “did you get all of that?” or “did you hear me?” This will make the listener feel more at ease about asking you to confirm what you just said. 

Learn more about Audiology at The Oregon Clinic