Cedar Audiology Associates - Cleveland, OH

Hearing loss depicted as a problem that compounds by showing several cutout men toppled over on one man.

Are you taken aback to learn that hearing loss is more than just your ears? Ears are the means of hearing, so the damage done to them due to aging, trauma or disease is why someone can not hear, but did you know there’s more to it than the loss of one’s hearing bleeds into a number of other aspects of their life. It’s a dramatic change for someone who has always had the ability to hear. Take some ways that hearing loss has a significant effect on more than just the ears.

Earning Potential

A 2006 report published by the Australian company Access Economics states there is a connection between earning potential and hearing. They discovered that an individual with hearing loss will possibly make about 25 percent less than those that do listen, but why?

There are a lot of things that could impact earnings. Somebody who works without any hearing assistance device like a hearing aid might miss out on weighty information. They might show up for a company meeting at 4 when it was actually at 2 pm, for example. Employers tend to value those with shrewd attention to detail, and that’s a challenge when you can not hear the details.

Work environments can be loud and crazy, too. A person with hearing loss can become confused with all that noise around them. They’ll struggle to speak on the telephone, to listen to customers and to understand what colleagues are saying because in a loud environment the background sounds like clacking keyboards or an air conditioner vent become conspicuous.

Relationships

Some of the same problems at work become a problem at home. Hearing loss has the potential to cause conflict, especially when the person with the problem continues to deny it. Little things like saying “what” a lot during conversations and turning the TV up too loud irritate friends, relatives, and spouses.

They may attempt to intervene and encourage this person to recognize their hearing loss, which leads to friction, also. It is very common for someone with hearing loss to sequester themselves and refuse to go out and spend time with other people. They struggle to keep up with conversations, so that they so what the can to avoid them.

Mental Health Concerns

The problems at work and home take a toll on mental health over time. A 2014 study performed by the U.S. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders discovered a cause and effect relationship between hearing loss and melancholy. Their research suggests an increased risk of depression, especially among girls and people under the age of 70. Their risk of depression goes from 5 percent to about 11 percent with hearing loss.

A second study by the Senior Research Group suggests that the risk of mental health problems including depression, anxiety and paranoia goes up when a individual with hearing loss does not use hearing aids. The study participants who didn’t wear hearing aids reported everything from feelings of sadness to sudden fits of anger more often than those that did wear them.

Safety Issues

Security is always a concern for the hearing impaired. Most security systems, while it’s a smoke or carbon monoxide detector or a perimeter alarm, work based on noise. They exude a high-frequency noise if there’s a danger. Even people with slight hearing loss can have trouble hearing high pitched tones.

Personal safety becomes a problem when a person with hearing loss crosses the road or drives a car, too. Sound serves to indicate problems like a car coming down the road or a horn honking.

Cognitive Functioning

Medical science has made a connection between cognitive decline and hearing loss. It isn’t clear why people with hearing loss have a higher risk of dementia. The current theory is that the brain struggles to listen and to compensate, it robs other vital functions like memory.

A 2011 study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine discovered that someone with minor hearing loss is twice as likely to develop dementia. Moderate hearing loss increases the risk by three times and an individual with severe hearing impairment is five times more likely to get Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Hearing health is just one factor in memory loss conditions, but it’s an important one.

When a person has hearing loss, it’s true there’s probably something wrong with their ears, but that’s just where it begins. The fantastic news is that getting help in the kind of hearing aids and other treatment choices reduces the chance of mental health problems, dementia and the different issues associated with hearing decline.

Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call Us Today