There is yet another danger in the world of issues related to hearing loss. While brain damage is certainly one of the most terrifying, a strong second contender has emerged in the form of depression. A recent study has revealed that people who suffer from hearing loss are much more likely to have depression than their normal-hearing counterparts. This article will examine the different ways that you can prevent hearing loss throughout your own life, what treatments are available, as well as the study that led to this incredible discovery.
Preventing Hearing Loss
One of the most important things that you can do to keep your hearing healthy for the rest of your life and to avoid depression is to save your hearing. This means spending less time in very noisy environments. However, since not all people can simply avoid a lot of noise, then it is necessary to wear hearing protection in many cases. This can be done in the form of ear plugs or even noise reducing headphones. Many work environments make them mandatory, but even if you got to some place like a concert, it is a good idea to wear them as well.
Treating Hearing Loss Depression
There are a few ways that you can go about treating depression. When it comes to hearing loss induced depression, many people think that the best way to treat it is to treat the depression. Whether through medicine or with therapy, treating depression is not an exact science, but it can certainly help. Another positive way of treating this ailment is to treat the hearing loss. By improving the ability of the individual to hear, they will be able to reintegrate themselves into their old lives and come out from their depression.
The Study And Results
The study was undertaken by individuals at the Institute for Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. They used over 18,000 people for their research, testing their hearing by self reporting data or going in to a clinic to have it tested for them. The people were between the ages of 18 and 80 at the time of the study. After they had their baseline hearing levels established, they were given a test that was meant to reveal if they had any signs of depression.
The results were very unusual as they showed that people under the age of 70 with hearing loss had depression in 11% of all cases; much higher than the accepted level of 4% for the population. The only confounding fact was that they people over the age of 70 did not show increased rates of depression, but the fact remains that there is a strong correlation between hearing loss and depression.