As we age, hearing loss is normally regarded as an inescapable fact of life. Lots of older Americans suffer from some type of hearing loss or tinnitus, which is a continuous 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 suggests that more than half of all Canadians middle-aged and older suffer from some type of hearing loss, but that 77% of those individuals do not report any problems. In the United States, more than 48 million individuals have some type of hearing loss, but many do not attempt to do anything about it. If this denial is deliberate or not is up for debate, but either way, loss of hearing is neglected by a substantial number of people – which, down the road, could bring about considerable issues.
Why is Hearing Loss Missed by Some people?
It’s a complex matter. It’s a slow process when a person loses their hearing, and some people may not even recognize that they are having a more difficult time hearing things or understanding people than they used to. Or, more commonly, they might blame it on something else – the person they’re speaking to is muttering, volumes aren’t turned up loud enough, or background noise is too high. hearing loss can be blamed, unfortunately, on a number of things, and getting a hearing exam or getting checked out, normally, is not a person’s first reaction.
It also happens that some people just won’t acknowledge that they suffer from hearing loss. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors who suffer from hearing issues flat out deny it. They mask their problem however they can, either because they don’t want to acknowledge a problem or because of perceived stigmas surrounding hearing loss.
The problem with both of these scenarios is that by rejecting or not recognizing you have a problem hearing you could actually be negatively influencing your general health.
Neglected Hearing Loss Can Have a Catastrophic Affect
Loss of hearing does not exclusively impact your ears – it has been connected to different ailments such as depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline, and it can also be a symptom of high blood pressure and heart disease.
Research has shown that people who have addressed their hearing loss using cognitive therapy, diet changes and hearing aids have better overall health and longer life spans.
It’s important to recognize the signs of hearing loss – persistent humming or ringing in the ears, trouble having conversations, having to crank up the volume of your radio or TV.
What Can be Done to Manage Hearing Loss?
There are a number of treatments you can do to get your hearing loss under control. Hearing aids are the type of treatment that is the most prevalent, and hearing aid tech has developed by leaps and bounds over the last several years so it’s unlikely you’ll have the same issues your grandparents or parents did. Contemporary hearing aids come with Bluetooth functionality so they can connect wirelessly to your phone or TV and they have the ability to filter out background noise and wing.
A dietary changes could impact the health of your hearing if you suffer from anemia. Since anemia iron deficiency has been demonstrated to cause loss of hearing, people who suffer from tinnitus can be helped by consuming foods that are high in iron.
Having your hearing examined regularly, however, is the most important thing you can do.
Are you concerned you might have hearing troubles? Come in and get screened.