Navigating through the world with hearing problems can be difficult at times, especially when you need to rely on your hearing for health and safety. Driving is one area that can cause difficulties for many people affected by impaired hearing. Thankfully, just because you have difficulty hearing doesn’t mean that safe driving isn’t possible. Follow some simple driving tips and you can drive perfectly safely.
- Eliminate distractions: Your eyesight becomes very important when driving with hearing problems. Therefore, you can put yourself (and your passengers) in danger if distractions such as electronic devices or food draw your eyes away from the road. You’ll also find that it becomes more difficult to hear important traffic cues if you have the radio on while driving. Get rid of any influences that get between you and the road to make sure you aren’t missing crucial information.
- Drive with your hearing aid in mind: If you wear a hearing aid be sure you don’t drive without it. It’s also important to make sure your car’s environment is conducive to proper hearing aid functioning. Don’t be afraid to switch on the AC rather than driving with the windows open. Your hearing aid can become less effective if it is buffeted by a draft from an open window, impairing your hearing and putting you at risk.
- Keep your car in good shape: You know that if your vehicle is generating a peculiar sound there is probably something wrong with it. However, if you can’t pick up on audio clues that something is wrong with your vehicle you may end up driving an unsafe car. Keep regular maintenance appointments with your garage or dealership to make sure your car stays in optimum condition.
- Only drive when you feel comfortable: If you’re not comfortable driving a vehicle with hearing loss, don’t do it! There are many alternatives to owning an automobile, including public transportation. You are more likely to make dangerous mistakes if you drive while stressed, so only drive when you feel confident and safe.
As long as your doctor approves there is no reason for hearing loss to keep you from driving. Stay safe out there!