Even if you have an active, healthy lifestyle, you could experience hearing loss and certain cognitive concerns as you age. And a strong link between the two has been discovered by scientists which should never be ignored. So keep that hearing aid turned on.
Individuals with untreated hearing loss are two times as likely to cope with depression. Close to 27% more people with neglected hearing loss reported “frequently feeling sad” compared to those who used a hearing aid.
They were also 24% more likely to quit doing things they once loved and 39% more likely to feel like people are mad at them for no reason.
Let’s look at this interesting study and an even more troubling statistic you won’t want to hear but should be aware of. Don’t turn that hearing aid off!
Our ideas about hearing loss will be completely altered by this study
Age-related hearing loss has been considered a harmless affliction for centuries. It was believed that the other senses would merely compensate. The person would just get by and go on to live the rest of their life healthily, safely, and happily. Apart from hearing impairment, it was believed that loss of hearing had no other negative health effects.
Of course we now know that’s not the case. This study illustrates just one of the greater effects that hearing loss has on a person’s general health.
As a society, we will need to reconsider hearing loss based on this well-structured and important study.
How was this research done?
Committed researchers at the National Institute for Aging (NCOA) conducted this research and surveyed more than 2000 people 50 and older. Individuals with neglected hearing loss and people who used hearing aids were among the participants. They asked clinically-relevant questions to ascertain the levels of:
The study took a ground-breaking step by including over 2000 family members of the study participants. What they documented helped to give the participant’s comments validity. When we discuss hearing loss, this research, with the extra verification, becomes even more pertinent.
How depression affects health and quality of life
According to the American Psychological Association, those suffering from depression are more likely to develop eating disorders that can result in severe obesity or significant weight loss. Memory loss and insomnia are also more common in those with untreated hearing loss.
While cooking, driving, and other activities, their reduced reaction time can lead to severe injury. Those who suffer with depression have even been found to heal more slowly, leading to complications and lengthy hospital stays.
The chance of falling for older people is also increased when an individual has depression.
Depression progresses as hearing loss progresses. The individual often becomes less able to care for themselves as loneliness and isolation set in.
Now, let’s take a look at a really sad statistic.
Usage rates of hearing aids
Only about 25% of those who need hearing aids actually use them. That’s right. For many, this increased rate of depression and all of its unwanted impacts are completely unnecessary and avoidable, yet they’re not taking steps to stop it.
Why so many choose not to use a hearing aid
When asked why they don’t use a hearing aid, many individuals say they own one. They simply won’t wear it because it makes them “look old.” They’re embarrassed.
These people would benefit from a hearing aid update. Present day hearing aids can sync to your smart devices, work better, and are more subtle. This makes them seem more like an extension of your smart technology and less like a hearing aid.
A smaller but considerable number of people say hearing aids are too expensive. The connection between disregarded hearing loss and overall health hazards is now beginning to be recognized by states and insurance companies. Hearing aids are, because of this, becoming more accessible and cost-effective. In addition, individuals who object to the price of hearing aids also don’t understand how much-untreated hearing loss can cost them over time. They’re not aware of how hearing loss will affect their health and quality of life. Neglected hearing loss can increase your total healthcare costs by as much as 4o percent in only a few years.
What can be done to minimize hearing-related depression symptoms?
Wear your hearing aid with pride. Help fight the stigma people feel about wearing a hearing aid by showing them how much healthier you feel when you can hear.
Optimize your hearing in every situation with your modern hearing aid by taking a little time to master the advanced features. If you’re only turning the volume up and down, you’re not getting the most out of your hearing aid. Consult us so you can try out these upgraded hearing aids.
Consult us right away about the most effective way to utilize your hearing aid, especially if you recognize that you’re not getting the most out of it and are tempted to put it in a drawer.