As we age, loss of hearing is typically considered a fact of life. Loss of hearing is experienced by many older Americans as is tinnitus or a ringing in the ears. But if it’s such an accepted condition, why is it that so many people won’t admit that they suffer from hearing loss?
A new study from Canada reveals that hearing loss is experienced by more than 50 percent of Canadians, but no problems were reported at all by over 77% percent of those. Some form of hearing loss is impacting more than 48 million Americans and untreated. It’s up for debate whether this denial is on purpose or not, but it’s still true that a considerable number of individuals let their hearing loss go unchecked – which could result in considerable problems later on in life.
Why is Loss of Hearing Not Recognized by Some people?
That matter is a complex one. Loss of hearing is a gradual process, and difficulty understanding people and hearing things go unnoticed. Many times they blame everyone else around them – they think everyone is mumbling, volumes aren’t turned up loud enough, or background noise is too high. There are, unfortunately, numerous things that hearing loss can be blamed on, and having a hearing exam or getting checked out, normally, is not a person’s first reaction.
On the other hand, there may be some people who know they’re suffering from hearing loss but refuse to accept it. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors flat out deny that they are suffering from a hearing problem. They do everything they can to hide their problem, either they perceive a stigma around hearing loss or because they don’t like to admit to having an issue.
The problem with both of these scenarios is that by rejecting or not recognizing you have a hearing problem you could actually be negatively influencing your overall health.
Neglected Hearing Loss Can Have a Catastrophic Affect
It’s not just your ears that are affected by loss of hearing – it has been linked to various ailments like depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline, and it can also be a symptom of heart disease and high blood pressure.
Research has revealed that people suffering from hearing loss generally have shorter life expectancy rates and their level of health is not as good as other people who have treated their hearing loss with hearing aids, dietary changes, or cognitive behavioral therapy.
It’s important to identify the indications of hearing loss – difficulty having conversations, cranking up the volume on the TV and radio, or a chronic humming or ringing in your ears.
What Can be Done About Hearing Loss?
There are several treatment options you can undertake to get your hearing loss under control. Hearing aids are the type of treatment that is the most common, and hearing aid tech has developed by leaps and bounds over the past few years so it’s unlikely you’ll have the same issues your parents or grandparents did. Hearing aids now have the ability to filter out background noise and wind, while also connecting wirelessly to devices like your TV, tablet, or radio.
A dietary changes could also have a positive effect on the health of your hearing if you have anemia. Eating more foods that are rich in iron has been discovered to help people deal with tinnitus and loss of hearing since iron deficiency anemia has been demonstrated to result in hearing loss.
Having your hearing checked on a regular basis, however, is the most important thing you can do.
Do you suspect that might have hearing loss? Visit us and get screened.