Woman drivingDriving can be difficult enough with all of your senses working perfectly, so operating a motor vehicle with hearing loss does pose some unique challenges.

However, there are some techniques you can use to ensure the safety of you, your passengers and other drivers on the road. Physicians Hearing Center in Dothan, Alabama offers the following advice for better driving with hearing loss:

Emergencies

One of the biggest fears of drivers with hearing loss is they will not hear sirens of emergency vehicles and realize they should pull over. Drivers can lessen the likelihood of this situation by staying vigilant with their eyes, constantly assessing their surroundings. Check your mirrors often and keep your eyes on the road to know when emergency vehicles are approaching.

Communicating Safely With Passengers

It can be particularly difficult to communicate with passengers since you have to pay attention to the road, and lip-reading while driving is obviously dangerous. Drivers may find it helpful to use technology such as a remote microphone. With this device, passengers speak into the unit and the sound is carried directly to your hearing aids. Remember, safety is of utmost importance, so find a spot to pull over and have a conversation if detailed communication is necessary.

Be A Defensive Driver

While it may be difficult to hear the honks of other drivers’ vehicles, keep in mind that most honks stem from impatient or annoyed drivers. Driving mindfully and defensively will lessen the chances of eliciting honks from other motorists.

Be Prepared For Pullovers

Almost all drivers get pulled over for some kind of traffic violation at one time or another. Remember to stay calm and park in a well-lit area so you and the officer can see each other clearly. It’s a good idea to explain to the officer that you have hearing loss – you may want to have a “deaf visor card” to help them understand you may have difficulty communicating.

If you suspect hearing loss in you or a loved one, schedule a hearing evaluation with one of Physician Hearing Center’s audiologists