For anyone experiencing hearing impairment, the message is straightforward: Get a hearing aid.
Why? A recent study revealed that people who obtained hearing aids within three years of being diagnosed with hearing impairment were less likely to experience dementia, depression, anxiety, and dangerous falls than those who didn’t receive hearing aids. While this doesn’t prove hearing aids stop these health issues, their use is associated with fewer health problems. Results from the study demonstrated 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 serious fall.
Refrain From Making Excuses
It’s important to keep in mind that regarding your health, these figures might appear low but they’re still significant. Previous research has demonstrated a link between hearing loss and other serious health problems, but this study proved it’s an ongoing, declining problem. But many individuals who have hearing loss don’t address it or ever use hearing aids. Why not? For many, the lack of insurance coverage is an issue. Even among those who have insurance, the expense could seem too high.
Some people actually go in and get fitted but when they bring their hearing aid home, it seems like too much hassle to wear them, so they don’t. Many people don’t view hearing loss as a major issue because they can turn up the TV volume to solve the problem.
Higher volume on the TV won’t solve the problem, though, and while hearing loss may seem to be an inevitable part of getting older, there is a lot more to it.
The Importance of Healthy Hearing
Clearly, a principal aspect of communication is the ability to hear. If your inability to communicate causes you to miss an essential instruction by your doctor or guidance by a family member, that’s an issue. Consequently, communicating your concerns and symptoms will be a challenge.
Other issues linked to a lack of effective communication are less apparent. If attempting to have a conversation on the phone leaves you feeling embarrassed and frustrated, you may start to lose touch with people in your support system. Not being able to hear may even lead to less brain stimulus, and we all recognize that exercising your mind can help fight against dementia.
Hearing Aid Advantages
Extreme long-term challenges are not all that getting hearing aids is about. Your long term outlook will definitely improve but hearing aids will immediately improve your quality of life. If you can hear and engage in conversations, it decreases your chances of feeling isolated and lets you partake more completely in your social life. When you can communicate clearly with your physician, you can effectively share the health concerns you are experiencing and understand your doctor’s treatment plan to reduce your anxiety further.
Do I need hearing aids? If you are dealing with any of the following symptoms, the answer is yes:
- Trouble hearing the person you’re talking to if there’s background sound
- Avoiding social situations because you’re afraid you can’t follow conversations
- Asking people to repeat themselves frequently
- Turning the volume of the TV up very high
These and possibly other symptoms may be a signal that it’s time to think about getting a hearing aid. If any of them sound familiar, ask us if a hearing aid may be the right choice for you.