Your life can be profoundly affected by hearing loss, in a way that goes beyond the inability to hear. The loss of your hearing will get in the way of day-to-day activities and can stress relationships.
A survey conducted by AARP found that quality of life is more seriously impacted by hearing loss than:
The loss of hearing, when left untreated, can definitely get in the way of your lifestyle, nevertheless, there are many who don’t get help. Many people who have hearing loss avoid getting help because they think that there is a stigma associated with hearing loss, according to researchers. If others find out they suffer from hearing loss, people fear they will be treated differently. A distorted self image can be the result of this perception, affecting the young and the old.
Your Not The Only One
As lifespans get longer, hearing loss has become more prevalent, despite the fact that it can impact people of all ages, The World Health Organization reports that there are more than 1.1 billion people, many of them young adults, in danger of hearing loss and the public perception that comes with it. In fact, hearing loss is one of the most widespread health issues adults face. Persistent reluctance to get help continues even while the amount of people with hearing loss grows. How does this impact one’s overall health?
How Is Hearing Loss Perceived?
By definition, stigma means a brand that marks a person as inferior and that basically tells the story. Many people with hearing loss are concerned they will seem older than they are, less healthy, or less able.
Historically, there is some basis for this concern. A 2010 study revealed when people suffer from hearing loss they were not as well accepted. But the data from this research is almost 10 years old. This perception is changing as hearing loss is becoming more commonplace. Celebrities openly wear hearing aids and the devices are becoming more sophisticated, stylish, and fun. Research reveals that some other age related health problems, such as dementia, could be slowed or even prevented by seeking treatment. This is changing peoples mind about hearing loss and also their hearts. Some people still don’t get help in spite of this research.
Does it Even Matter?
It is simple to say that perception doesn’t matter, but if this anxiety is keeping you from getting help, recognize that there are health consequences for not getting treatment. More people get colonoscopies than hearing tests according to an AARP survey. Not recognizing your hearing loss, not getting a hearing exam and seeking treatment will take a physical toll, particularly over time.
Consequences of Undiagnosed or Untreated Hearing Loss
These bodily consequences of not dealing with your hearing loss will impact your general health;
Everything in life is more laborious when you are working hard to hear. You have to work harder than other people to hear conversations and sounds. You also have to be extra careful to protect your safety because you can’t hear warning sounds or vehicles approaching. All the extra energy you put into day-to-day tasks can lead to chronic fatigue.
Stress and anxiety can trigger migraines and other kinds of headaches. Studies have shown a link, though you may not have recognized there was a correlation, between certain forms of hearing loss and migraines. Even if you’re not prone to migraines, your brain has to make up for the sounds you can’t hear, and that constant struggle can cause your head to hurt.
As a consequence of your untreated hearing loss, you could face mental health problems including depression and social anxiety. Hearing loss can lead to dementia and usually causes social isolation. You will have less energy and will be moodier if you have these other challenges.
The Negative Perception of Hearing Loss Can be Surmounted
Overcoming these negative perceptions starts with getting help. If you are losing your hearing, it is treatable. If you choose not to get help, you should recognize that you are the one who suffers.
Not all hearing loss is irreversible, either, so you could be stressing out for no reason. You can’t be sure what the issue is unless you schedule an appointment to get a hearing exam. It could be simple earwax buildup.
If it turns out you do have hearing loss, you need to deal with it. Nowadays hearing aids come in many shapes and sizes. If you don’t want other people to know about your hearing loss, then look for devices that are less visible.
Above all, prove them wrong. You should wear your hearing aids with confidence because when you can hear, you will be just as active and healthy as anyone else. The perception of people with hearing loss will be improved if you act in this way. Negative perceptions are social poisons so be strong and raise awareness to change them.
You don’t have to be less capable if you have hearing loss, because it’s actually a medical condition. Make an appointment to have a hearing exam today.