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Cooking with Hearing Loss - Important Safety and Communication Tips

For people with hearing loss disaster can come quickly in the kitchen. Learn how to stay safe and enjoy your kitchen companions.



Hi. I'm Jim Cuddy, and this is Ask the Hearing Doctors. And I'm joined today by Dr. Wendy Thorne, doctor of audiology with Hearing Doctors. The Washington, D.C. areas, highest rated audiology practice with over 1500, 5-star reviews. Wendy, great to see you as always.


Thank you. You too.


So something we talk about a lot with hearing loss, of course, on the Hearing Doctors, but cooking with hearing or hearing loss for somebody in the kitchen. We don't really talk about things like that. An everyday thing that we do. What are some of the dangers for somebody with hearing loss when they're cooking in the kitchen?


Yeah, there's a lot of sounds when you're in the kitchen that can be dangerous if you're not hearing them. Different things like hearing the gas clicking on on the stove, you want to make sure that that's, you know, catching when it should and when it's off, when it should be. The garbage disposal, different things being caught in that, pots or pans overflowing or different things burning, you know, things that can be dangerous if they're not, you know, taken care of in a timely fashion.


Now, what about some advice for folks that somebody that has hearing loss they're going to have a bunch of people over for dinner. They may not be thinking about some of this stuff. What are some advice you could give to folks?


So I would tell those patients, you know, be aware of what your task is within the kitchen. Make sure other people around you are aware as well that you have hearing loss and that you may not be able to hear those different sounds and that, you know, you want to make sure that they're attentive to where they need to be.


Now, tips for communicating with somebody who has hearing loss. And now we're kind of turn the tables and talk to the people that perhaps don't have the hearing loss that need to be respectful of those that do.


Yeah. So I think that all the tips that we typically give apply also within the kitchen. So, you know, telling the person to get their attention first before you ask them a question. Make sure that you're facing them. You're talking a little bit louder, but more importantly, slowly so that they can hear you clearly, especially if there's a lot of cooking sounds in the background that can make it hard to hear through.


Also, it's good to alert the cook of different dangers around. So if a knife is falling on the floor, there is a wet spot, something that could be slippery. So let the cook with hearing loss know that there are dangers around in case they haven't seen or heard those things. 


Right. A broken glass falls off the counter and they they may not hear it.




Great information. I didn't think we talking about people in the kitchen with hearing loss, but it makes perfect sense. Wendy, thanks for your time. If you're in the Washington metropolitan area and you'd like to schedule an appointment with Hearing Doctors, click the link in the description or visit

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