There’s a very basic message for anybody struggling with hearing loss: Use hearing aids.
Why? A recent study found that people were not as likely to develop health issues such as depression, anxiety, dementia, and dangerous falls if they began using hearing aids within three years of being diagnosed with hearing loss. While these health issues aren’t proven to be eliminated by hearing aids, fewer health problems have been linked to their use. Results from the study showed that hearing aid users were 18% less likely to develop dementia, 11% less likely to develop depression or anxiety, and 13% less likely to suffer a dangerous fall.
Stop The Excuses
If these numbers seem low to you, it’s essential to remember that your health is at risk, and every little bit counts. Prior studies have shown a correlation between hearing loss and other serious health problems, but this study proved it’s an ongoing, declining issue. But many individuals who have hearing impairment don’t have it treated or ever use hearing aids. Why not? For many, the absence of insurance coverage is a problem. Even among those with insurance, the expense might be too high.
Others go through the motions, getting fitted for hearing aids and taking them home only to let them sit in the case because wearing them seems like too much of an inconvenience. Many people don’t view hearing loss as a major issue because they can turn the volume of the TV up to solve the problem.
Louder volume on the TV won’t solve the problem, though, and while hearing loss might seem to be an inescapable part of getting older, there is much more to it.
Healthy Hearing is Important
Hearing is obviously a huge element of communication. If your failure to communicate causes you to miss a critical instruction by your doctor or direction by a family member, that’s an issue. As a result, you may not be able to convey your concerns and symptoms.
There are also some less obvious problems associated with inadequate communication. When you strain to hear and keep up with a conversation on the phone, you may lose touch with some of the people in your support system out of embarrassment and frustration. Not being able to hear may even lead to less brain stimulation, and we all recognize that exercising your mind can help fend off dementia.
The Advantages of Hearing Aids
Getting a hearing aid isn’t all about severe, long-term worries. Your long term outlook will certainly improve but hearing aids will immediately improve your quality of life. If you can hear and engage in conversations, it reduces your chances of feeling isolated and allows you to participate more completely in your social life. When you can communicate intelligibly with your physician, you can accurately share the health problems you are experiencing and comprehend your doctor’s treatment plan to reduce your anxiety even more.
Should I get hearing aids? If you have any of the following symptoms, the answer is yes:
- Constantly needing people to repeat what they said
- Watching TV at extreme volume
- Keeping away from social situations for fear you can’t follow conversations
- Background sound makes it hard to hear when somebody is speaking to you
These are only some of the symptoms that may reveal you should look into a hearing aid. If any of them sound familiar, ask us if a hearing aid might be the right choice for you.