Untreated hearing loss can take a toll on communication and overall health. Avoiding hearing tests not only worsens hearing impairment but also affects all aspects of daily life.
Impact of Avoiding Hearing Tests
Avoiding hearing tests and delaying hearing loss treatment can worsen impairment as well as the multifaceted effects that impact daily life. This includes:
- Strained Communication. Untreated hearing loss produces numerous symptoms that take a toll on communication. This includes tinnitus (a buzzing or ringing-like noise in the ears), sounds that are muffled or distorted, and difficulty hearing clearly in environments with background noise. These symptoms often result in people having to ask others to repeat themselves, speak loudly or slowly, increase the volume on electronic devices, etc. This strains communication and can lead to unpleasant interactions, miscommunication, and stress. This toll on communication often leads to avoiding conversations altogether. Social withdrawal is a major outcome of untreated hearing loss, one that affects social life and relationships.
- Impacts Relationships. Communication is a key component of sustaining healthy relationships and fostering social connections. Loved ones often report feeling ignored and unheard which can produce tension and distance in relationships. Untreated hearing loss significantly impacts the capacity to spend quality time with others and engage in effective communication.
- Increases Health Risks. Substantial research shows that untreated hearing loss increases the risk of developing other health conditions. This includes:
- Cognitive Decline. A major study published in 2019 found that cognitive decline was 54% higher among people with severe hearing loss. Hearing loss happens in the ears as well as the brain and researchers suggest that hearing loss can cause the brain to experience cognitive overload, experience less stimulation, and also brain atrophy which affects cognitive functions.
- Depression. A 2015 study found that participants with hearing loss were more than twice as likely to experience moderate to severe depression. Specifically, moderate to severe depression impacted 11.4% of people who had hearing loss compared to 4.9% for people with excellent hearing. Social withdrawal increases loneliness and affects relationships which contribute to depression.
- Accidental Injuries. A 2012 study revealed that people with mild hearing loss were 3 times more likely to have a history of falling. Untreated hearing loss reduces the capacity to hear warning signs and other activity in one’s environment. This decreases spatial awareness which makes falling more likely.
Leaving hearing loss untreated can exacerbate these symptoms which disrupt daily life as well as health and wellness. Treating hearing loss is the best way to prevent or alleviate this toll as well as to transform your health.
Address Hearing Loss Today
You may feel anxious about addressing hearing loss but the first step is simple and our practice is here to provide comprehensive support! You can prioritize your hearing health today by calling to make an appointment for a hearing test. Hearing tests involve a painless process that is facilitated by a hearing healthcare specialist. This process is non-invasive and measures hearing capacity in both ears using tone and speech tests to identify the sounds you can hear. Hearing tests identify any impairment as well as the degree of hearing loss you could be experiencing. Once your hearing needs are established, the hearing healthcare specialist can recommend treatment options that will effectively meet those needs!
Benefits of Hearing Aids
The most common treatment for hearing loss is hearing aids. These are medical devices that are designed to detect, amplify, and process sound. This provides significant support with hearing which allows people to process sound with greater ease. Maximizing hearing capacity, hearing aids alleviate symptoms that often disrupt conversations and make communication difficult. This strengthens communication as well as offers countless benefits including:
- Strengthening relationships: people are better able to hear, readily respond, and express their thoughts. This allows people to fully engage in conversation and be present with others. Enhanced communication also supports people spending quality time with their loved ones and nurturing the closeness of relationships.
- Enriching social life: Communication is also key for an active social life. Hearing aids provide ample support as people navigate social settings and activities. People are equipped to have conversations with multiple people and in more dynamic settings without the stress of hearing loss symptoms. This enriches social life and connections.
- Improving overall health: hearing aids also reduce the risk of developing health conditions like cognitive decline, experiencing accidental injuries, and depression.
Call us today to get started!