Your life can be seriously affected by hearing loss, in a way that goes beyond the inability to hear. Relationships can be stressed and daily pursuits can be interrupted by hearing loss.
A survey carried out by AARP found that quality of life is more seriously impacted by hearing loss than:
There are lots of people who don’t get help with their hearing loss despite the fact that it negatively impacts their lifestyle. Researchers have discovered that many people suffering from hearing loss are still worried about a perceived stigma attached to it. If others find out they suffer from hearing loss, people are scared they will be treated differently. A distorted self image can be formed as a result of this perception, affecting the young and the old.
Many Other People Also Have Hearing Loss
Even though it can impact people of all ages, it is true that as lifespans get longer there are more instances of hearing loss. The World Health Organization reports that over 1.1 billion people are in danger of hearing loss and the perceived perceptions that come with it, many of them young adults. In fact, hearing loss is one of the most widespread health issues adults face. Even as the number of people who have hearing loss keeps growing, the resistance to getting treatment for hearing loss appears to persist. What is the impact on general health?
What is The Perception of Hearing Loss?
The story is pretty well illustrated by the very definition of stigma, which is a brand that labels someone as inferior. The concern for a lot of people with hearing loss is that they will appear less able, older, and perhaps less healthy.
Historically, there is some basis for this worry. A 2010 study found when people suffer from hearing loss they were not as well accepted. But the data from this study is nearly a decade old. As hearing loss becomes more widespread, this perception is changing. Sophisticated, stylish, and fun technology is now available that even has celebrities publicly wearing hearing aids. Other health concerns relating to aging, like cognitive decline and dementia may be delayed or even prevented by getting treatment, researchers say. This is also helping to change the perception. And still, despite changing perceptions, some people still are reluctant to get treatment.
What Difference Does it Make?
Don’t allow your anxiety about negative perception keep you from seeking treatment or you might suffer permanent health consequences. People get colonoscopies, according to an AARP survey, more often than they get hearing tests. Not getting a hearing test because you refuse to acknowledge your hearing loss will impact your health as you get older.
Consequences of Undiagnosed or Untreated Hearing Loss
Your general health will be impacted by these physical consequences;
Fighting to hear makes just about everything in life more challenging. It becomes a difficult task to try to hear conversations and common sounds. You have to put more effort into staying safe, also, because you can’t hear that car or truck coming or someone walking behind you. All the extra work you put into daily tasks can lead to chronic fatigue.
Common Headaches and Migraines
Stress and anxiety can trigger migraines and other types of headaches. You might not realize there is a connection, but studies have shown a link between migraines and certain kinds of hearing loss. The constant extra effort of your brain to compensate for what you can’t hear can cause your head to ache even if you don’t normally get migraines.
As a result of your untreated hearing loss, you may be facing mental health concerns like depression and social anxiety. Hearing loss can lead to dementia and usually causes social isolation. Moodiness and reduced energy levels go along with these other challenges.
The Negative Perception of Hearing Loss Can be Surmounted
Taking the first step and get help if you want to conquer these negative perceptions. Hearing loss is a treatable condition. Accept that you are the one that suffers if you don’t get that treatment.
Not all hearing loss is irreversible, either, so you could be stressing for no reason. Something as basic as earwax buildup may be the cause, but you won’t know for sure unless you schedule an appointment to get a hearing test.
Acknowledging you have hearing loss is not enough, you need to do something about it. There are many style options now. There are hearing aids that are less obvious if your nervous about people knowing you have hearing loss.
Finally, prove them wrong. You can be just as active and healthy as anyone, so wear your hearing aids with self-confidence. Your attitude will change people’s perception not only of you, but of everyone else who has hearing loss. Negative perceptions are social poisons so stay strong and increase awareness to change them.
Hearing loss is not a personal weakness it’s a medical condition. So see a hearing professional for a hearing test right away.