Many people see hearing loss as an inevitable part of aging, and they are unaware of the impact that an untreated hearing loss can have on their quality of life. To raise awareness of this and to encourage more people to seek professional help, we’re going to highlight how hearing loss can affect more than just your ability to hear.
Quality of Life
Hearing loss doesn’t just affect the person experiencing it. Relationships with friends, family and coworkers can all become strained. This can lead to social isolation, anxiety, low self-esteem, frustration, embarrassment and depression.
A 2017 study by NIDCD found that more than 11% of people with hearing loss also suffered from depression. This could potentially be down to how hearing loss affects both loneliness, lack of confidence and the way motor skills and productivity work.
A JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery study used data from 200,000 people 50+ who had untreated hearing loss for 2 years and showed how likely they were to experience other health problems. They found the longer hearing loss was left untreated, the higher the risks. Here are some other recent study findings that highlight the health implications.
- Lifespan – JAMA otolaryngology-Head and neck surgery online edition, (Sept 24, 2015) suggested that adults with untreated hearing loss may have a shorter lifespan.
- Injuries – A Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and National Institute on aging study found that even mild hearing loss can triple your fall risk, increasing 1.4 times for every additional 10 decibels of hearing loss. Professor Neil Bhattacharyaat of Harvard Medical School says there is a strong connection with leisure activities and workplace injuries “If you can’t hear well, you lose that crucial warning system that would signal to you that a car or truck is driving up behind you while you’re biking, for example. Hearing has a tremendous protective role.”
- Cognitive Decline – The same team John Hopkins team also found that untreated hearing loss speeds up age-related cognitive decline by as much as 30-40%. A possible explanation being that the brain may be expending too much energy processing sound at the expense of memory and thinking.
- Dementia – John Hopkins also showed that adults with mild untreated hearing loss are twice as likely to develop Dementia and those with severe hearing loss are 5 times as likely.
- If you are concerned about your hearing, speak to a hearing care specialist ASAP.
- Follow a healthy diet and regular exercise plan.
- Stay social and speak about your difficulties with those close to you.
- Stay alert and aware of surroundings.
- Use your hearing aid / devices to enrich your life.
Contact Us Today!
Your hearing is vital to both your health and happiness and those close to you. Assessments are quick, pain free and our caring professionals will talk you through your options. It takes the average person 7 years to seek treatment. Why not get ahead of the crowd and take action today. Contact the team at Regional Hearing and Balance at 208-497-3596 or click here to book a complimentary hearing assessment.