As we get older, we all know that hearing loss and particular mental health challenges can worsen despite a healthy, active lifestyle. And scientists have recognized a strong link between the two that shouldn’t be dismissed and it will help if you don’t turn that hearing aid off.
People with neglected hearing loss are two times as likely to cope with depression. Close to 27% more individuals with untreated hearing loss reported “often feeling sad” compared to those who used a hearing aid.
They were also 39% more likely to feel that the people around them get annoyed for “no reason” and 24% more likely to steer clear of social experiences they once loved.
There’s an even sadder statistic you should be aware of, though you won’t like it very much. Don’t turn that hearing aid off!
This study turns our thoughts about hearing loss on their heads
Age-related hearing loss has been considered a harmless affliction for centuries. It was widely believed that compensation would come from all of the other senses. The person would simply get by and go on to live the rest of their life healthily, safely, and happily. Apart from hearing impairment, it was believed that loss of hearing had no other adverse health effects.
Of course we now know that’s not the situation. This study demonstrates just one of the larger effects that hearing loss has on a person’s overall health.
As a society, we will need to reconsider hearing loss based on this well-structured and significant study.
How was this research done?
Over 2000 individuals 50 or older were surveyed in this research carried out by dedicated researchers at the National Institute for Aging (NCOA). The participants included a combination of hearing aid wearers and those with untreated hearing loss. Clinically relevant questions were asked to determine the levels of the following:
More than 2000 family members of the participants were also involved in this ground-breaking study. What they documented helped to give the participant’s comments validity. When we discuss hearing loss, this study, with the extra verification, becomes even more pertinent.
How health and quality of life are affected by depression
Eating disorders like acute obesity or extreme weight loss are more likely in people who suffer from depression, according to the American Psychological Association. They are more likely to experience insomnia and memory loss.
They have diminished reaction time, which can result in significant injuries while cooking, driving, cleaning, and other activities. Those with depression have even been found to heal more slowly, causing complications and lengthy hospital stays.
The danger of falls for older people is also increased when an individual suffers from depression.
Depression progresses as hearing loss progresses. The individual often becomes less able to care for themselves as loneliness and solitude set in.
Now, let’s take a look at a really sad statistic.
Usage rates of hearing aids
About 75% of individuals who need hearing aids don’t use them. Yup! Many people have the ability to protect themselves from depression by wearing hearing aids but for some reason abstain from taking the steps.
Why do so many individuals neglect using a hearing aid?
When asked why they don’t use a hearing aid, many people say they own one. They just don’t wear it because it makes them “look old.” They’re embarrassed.
These individuals would benefit from a hearing aid update. Contemporary hearing aids work better, and they are also more discreet and let people sync with devices. This makes them seem less like a hearing aid and more like an extension of their smart tech.
Price is also a problem for a smaller yet significant number of people. The link between untreated hearing loss and general health risks is now starting to be acknowledged by states and insurance companies. Hearing aids are, due to this, becoming more available and affordable. In addition, individuals who object to the price of hearing aids also don’t understand how much-neglected hearing loss can cost them over time. They’re unaware of how hearing loss will affect their health and quality of life. Neglected hearing loss can increase your overall healthcare costs by as much as 40% in only a few years.
How can hearing associated depression symptoms be reduced?
Wear your hearing aid with pride. Help fight the stigma people feel about wearing a hearing aid by showing them how much better you feel when you can hear.
Take a little time to master the advanced features of your modern hearing aid to optimize your hearing experience in every situation. You’re not getting the most out of your hearing aid by simply cranking up the volume. Get a consultation with us so you can demo these upgraded hearing aids.
Consult us right away about the most effective way to use your hearing aid, especially if you recognize that you’re not getting the most out of it and are tempted to put it in a drawer.