Woman confused at work because she has untreated hearing loss.

When people are at an age where they are still working, their job is often a big part of their self-worth. Their self-image is frequently based on what job they have, their position, and their pay.

When somebody asks “so what do you do?”, what’s the first thing you think. It’s probably to tell them about your occupation.

It’s not enjoyable to think about what would happen if something took your career away. But there’s a career-buster out there that should make anybody who loves putting in a good day’s work pay attention.

That livelihood killer is the disturbing link between untreated hearing loss and career success.

Untreated Hearing Loss Raises Unemployment Rates

A person is over 200% more likely to be unemployed or underemployed if they have untreated hearing loss. Underemployment is typically defined as the condition of employees not earning up to their potential, either because they aren’t working full time or because the work does not utilize all of their marketable expertise.

Those who have neglected hearing loss face lots of challenges in nearly any occupation. Doctors need to be able to hear their patients. If they’re going to safely work together, construction workers have to be able to communicate. Even a librarian would find it difficult to help library patrons without her hearing.

Lots of people remain in the same occupation their entire lives. They become quite good at what they do. If they can no longer execute that job well because of untreated hearing loss, it’s hard to make a living doing something else.

The Wage Gap Caused by Hearing Impairment

Someone with hearing loss makes only about 75 cents to every dollar that somebody with normal hearing earns. Numerous independent studies support this wage gap and demonstrate that that gap averages out at around $12,000 lost wages every year.

The extent of hearing loss is closely associated with how much they lose. According to a study conducted on 80,000 individuals, even people with slight hearing loss are potentially losing money.

What Are Some on The Job Challenges That People With Hearing Loss Face?

Somebody with untreated hearing loss is 5 times more likely to take a sick day as a result of job stress.

From moment to moment, someone with hearing loss copes with stresses that co-workers never see. Envision being in a meeting and struggling to hear while everyone else is taking their hearing for granted. And missing out on an essential piece of information is always a worry.

That’s even more stressful.

While on or off the job, it’s three times more likely that somebody with neglected hearing loss will suffer from a fall. Your ability to work is impacted.

Someone with neglected hearing loss is at an increased risk, in addition to job concerns, of the following:

  • Dementia
  • Paranoia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Social Isolation

All of this results in decreased productivity. People who have hearing loss face so many challenges, both at work and in their personal lives, unfortunately being passed over for a promotion is also a very real possibility.

Luckily, there’s a really bright upside to this dismal career outlook.

A Career Solution That Works

The unemployment and wage gap can be eliminated by wearing hearing aids according to some studies.

According to a Better Hearing Institute study, someone with mild hearing loss who uses hearing aids can erase the wage gap by as much as 90-100%.

Somebody with moderate hearing loss can remove about 77% of the gap. That gets them almost up to the earning of a person in the same job with normal hearing.

Even though hearing loss can be corrected it’s not uncommon for people to ignore it during their working years. They think that losing their hearing is embarrassing. They don’t want to seem “older” because of their hearing loss.

They may think that hearing aids are simply too expensive for them. They probably don’t realize that if hearing loss is left untreated, it worsens more quickly in addition to causing the other health concerns mentioned above.

These studies are even more compelling when these common objections are taken into account. Leaving your hearing untreated is likely more expensive than you recognize. It’s time to get a hearing test if you’re trying to decide if you should use hearing aids at work. Get in touch with us so we can help you make that decision.

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References

https://journals.lww.com/thehearingjournal/fulltext/2013/02001/Hearing_Loss_Linked_to_Unemployment,_Lower_Income.2.aspx

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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