Inability to hear is not the only effect of hearing loss, it can also have a powerful impact on your overall life. The loss of your hearing can easily get in the way of everyday activities and can strain relationships.
A survey conducted by AARP found that untreated hearing loss had a greater impact on quality of life than:
There are a lot of people who don’t seek help with their hearing loss despite the fact that it gets in the way of their lifestyle. Researchers have found that many people going through hearing loss are still worried about a perceived stigma attached to it. Being treated differently is one reason people who have hearing loss are hesitant to tell anyone they can’t hear that well. This perception can change how they view themselves whether they are young or old.
Your Not The Only One
Though it can impact people of any age, 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 at risk of hearing loss and the perceived perceptions that come along with it, many of them young adults. One of the most common health concerns facing young adults is, in fact, hearing loss. The reluctance to get help persists even as the amount of people with hearing loss increases. What is the impact on general health?
What is The Perception of Hearing Loss?
By definition, stigma means a brand that marks somebody as inferior and that more or less tells the story. Lots of people with hearing loss are worried they will come across as older than they actually are, less healthy, or less capable.
Historically, there is some basis for this concern. A 2010 study revealed when people have hearing loss they were not as well accepted. But the data from this research is nearly a decade old. This perception is changing as hearing loss is becoming more commonplace. Celebrities visibly wear hearing aids and the technology is becoming more cutting edge, stylish, and fun. Other health concerns related to aging, such as cognitive decline and dementia could be delayed or even prevented by getting treatment, researchers say. This is also helping to improve the perception. And still, despite changing perceptions, some people still hesitate to get treatment.
What Difference Does it Make?
Don’t allow your fear of negative perception keep you from getting treatment or you could suffer long-term health consequences. An AARP survey revealed that more people agree to get colonoscopies than hearing tests. Not acknowledging your hearing loss, not getting a hearing examination and seeking treatment will take a physical toll, this is especially true over time.
Untreated Hearing Loss, What Are The Consequences?
Your overall health will be affected by these physical consequences;
In life, everything is more difficult if you are struggling to hear. It becomes a difficult task to try and hear conversations and common sounds. You have to put more energy into keeping safe, as well, because you can’t hear that car or truck coming or someone walking behind you. Just working hard to hear everyday sounds can cause chronic fatigue.
You can get headaches and migraines if you have too much fear and stress. You might not recognize there is a connection, but studies have revealed a link between migraines and certain types of hearing loss. Your brain needs to make up for the sounds you can’t hear, so even if you’re not prone to migraines, the constant effort can make your headache.
You might also be facing mental health problems as a result of your untreated hearing loss such as depression and social anxiety. Social isolation is worse when you have hearing loss and it can also lead to dementia. Moodiness and reduced energy levels go hand-in-hand with these other issues.
Overcoming Negative Perceptions of Hearing Loss
Taking the first step and seek out help if you want to overcome these negative perceptions. If you are losing your hearing, it’s probably a treatable condition. If you decide not to get help, you should understand that you are the one who suffers.
There might not even be a cause to stress out because not all hearing loss is permanent. Simple earwax buildup can lead to hearing loss, but you won’t know for sure unless you make an appointment to have a hearing test.
Make sure you deal with it if it turns out that you do have hearing loss. You can get hearing aids in all shapes and sizes these days. You can get devices that are less visible if your nervous about people knowing you have hearing loss.
Most significantly, show everyone that you have plenty of confidence in spite of your hearing loss. You can 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 this way. Increase awareness and keep healthy by not giving in to negative perceptions.
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.