For anybody experiencing hearing impairment, the message is simple: Get a hearing aid.
Why? A recent study revealed that people were less likely to develop health issues like anxiety, dementia, depression, and dangerous falls if they started wearing hearing aids within three years of being diagnosed with hearing loss. While these health problems aren’t proven to be prevented by hearing aids, fewer health issues have been connected 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 serious fall.
Avoid Making Excuses
If these figures seem low to you, it’s essential to recall that your health is at stake, and every little bit counts. Previous studies have shown a correlation between hearing loss and other serious health issues, but this study verified it’s an ongoing, worsening issue. But many people 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 people who have insurance, the expense might seem too high.
Some individuals actually go in and get fitted but when they bring their hearing aid home, it seems like too much trouble to wear them, so they don’t. Most people just turn up the volume to solve the problem and don’t consider hearing loss as much of a problem.
While it may seem like hearing loss is inescapable as you get older, there’s more to it than that, and cranking the volume up is not the right answer.
The Value of Healthy Hearing
Hearing is clearly a big part of communication. Without the ability to communicate properly, you might not understand questions posed by your doctors or family. Consequently, communicating your concerns and symptoms will be a challenge.
There are also some less obvious issues connected 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 due to frustration or embarrassment. Not being able to hear might even lead to less brain stimulation, and we all recognize that exercising your mind can help fight against dementia.
The Benefits of Hearing Aids
Serious long-term challenges aren’t 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 participate in conversations, it lowers your chances of feeling isolated and allows you to participate more completely in your social life. You will reduce your anxiety even further when you are capable of accurately communicating your health concerns with your doctor and understanding his guidance for treatment.
Is it time to consider a hearing aid? The answer is yes if you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Frequently needing people to repeat what they said
- Being so intimidated that you won’t be able to follow conversations, you avoid social situations
- Turning the volume of the TV way up
- Trouble hearing the person you’re talking to if there is background sound
These are only some of the symptoms that might indicate you should look into a hearing aid. If any of them sound familiar, ask us if a hearing aid may be right for you.