3 books to help you cope with hearing loss

PHOTO: 3 books to help you cope with hearing loss

SINGAPORE - Facing hearing loss can be a particularly challenging and devastating condition for one to go through.

Many people with hearing loss may be told that there is no help for their problem, or that it's impossible for a hearing impaired to live life to the fullest. This is false, and often arise from a lack of understanding from the people around them.

These three books, reviewed by librarians from the National Library Board, answer everything you might want to know about hearing loss but are afraid to ask.

Pick them up for a great read today:

Title : The Hearing-Impaired Person: Tips for Caregivers and School Teachers
Author : Low Wong Kein
Publisher : Singapore: Grey Cells Series, c2011
Call No. : Sing English 362.42095957 - [HEA]
Reviewed By : Abigail Huang, National Library Board

Many difficulties faced by the hearing-impaired often arise from a lack of understanding and knowledge from the people around them.

Put together by Singapore General Hospital's Ear, Nose and Throat Centre, this book hopes to change the way people understand and respond to a person with hearing impairment.

Beginning with an introduction to hearing, hearing technology, and communication strategies, the book goes on to delve into tips for looking after hearing-impaired children (especially in a school setting), and the hearing-impaired elderly.

The text is clear and straightforward, and is accompanied by colour illustrations, fold-out charts and attractive photographs.

The book concludes with 20 patients and caregivers sharing their personal stories, accompanied by a doctor's comments on salient points in each account.

These personal stories are especially insightful as they provide a glimpse into what hearing-impaired life is like in the local context - highlighting both the struggles as well as the joys.

This book also dispels common misconceptions about hearing impairment. For example - shouting is actually not helpful for the hearing-impaired person, as doing so distorts speech sounds and gives the impression that the speaker is angry.

This book will prove to be useful for people who deal with the hearing-impaired, such as teachers or people with friends who are hearing-impaired.

Title : The Complete Idiot's Guide to Hearing Loss
Authors : House Clinic, edited by William M. Luxford, Jennifer Derebery and Karen I. Berliner
Publisher : New York, NY: Alpha Books/Penguin Group, c2010.
Call No. : English 617.8 COM - [HEA]
Reviewed By : Kweh Soon Huat, National Library Board

Produced by House Clinic - one of the most renowned treatment and research centres for hearing loss and ear diseases in the world - this book would help a hearing-impaired person live life to the fullest.

The hearing-impaired person can equip himself with the knowledge of how to deal effectively with it and hence discover a whole new world out there.

The authors are medical specialists with vast experience in the field of hearing impairment.

The book covers a wide spectrum of factors resulting in hearing loss - whether it is drug-induced, age-related, or due to noise, allergies, or ear diseases, as well as an overview of their treatment and prognoses.

Recognising symptoms of hearing loss in infants and children is a welcome chapter for parents as well. Hearing aids, assistive listening devices and communication techniques offer hope for the hearing-impaired in improving their quality of life.

As a hearing-impaired person myself, I found the section on hearing aids beneficial as it presents the pros and cons of different types of hearing aids.

This will definitely help the reader to make informed choices when selecting suitable hearing aids.

Practical tips on interacting with others in different environments (such as classrooms, restaurants, banks) and recognising speech patterns and clues will also be useful to enhance communication.

Title : Children with Hearing Loss: Developing Listening and Talking
Authors : Elizabeth Bingham Cole and Carol Ann Flexer Publisher : San Diego, CA: Plural Pub., c2011.
Call No. : English 617.89 COL - [HEA]
Reviewed By : Huang Su San, National Library Board

Children with Hearing Loss: Developing Listening and Talking was written by two doctors to provide a framework for caregivers and educators in helping young children with hearing loss to develop skills in listening and talking.

The book includes the causes of hearing loss, the steps involved in diagnosing and determining the degree of hearing loss among newborns, the various hearing aids and instruments available, and also highlights the differences between these aids and instruments.

It also lists some of the practical challenges that need to be considered when fitting hearing aids on infants, such whether there will be acoustic feedback sounds when the baby is lying down or being carried.

Apart from factual information, the authors also discuss the steps that need to be taken to provide a facilitative auditory environment for the child with hearing loss, in order for the child to learn to listen and talk effectively.

Scenarios are also provided to give better clarity, as well as explain the rationale behind these necessary steps.

For readers who have trouble understanding certain terms, a comprehensive glossary of terms is also thoughtfully included. Written in a clear and straightforward manner, this book is an easy read for everyone.