Even if you have an active, healthy lifestyle, you could develop hearing loss and specific cognitive challenges as you grow older. And a strong connection between the two has been discovered by scientists which should never be overlooked. So keep that hearing aid turned on.
Depression is twice as likely in people who have neglected hearing loss. In contrast to individuals who use a hearing aid, regular feelings of sadness were reported 27% more in people who have untreated hearing loss.
They were also 39% more likely to think the people around them get annoyed for “no reason” and 24% more likely to steer clear of social experiences they once loved.
Let’s explore this fascinating study and an even more troubling statistic you won’t want to hear but should know about. Keep that hearing aid turned on!
Our ideas about hearing loss will be entirely changed by this study
For centuries, age-related hearing loss has been regarded as a “harmless” condition. It was thought that the other senses would merely compensate. People would simply go on with their lives trying to live safely, healthily, and happily. Hearing loss was not thought to have any health impact besides the hearing impairment.
Now we know better. This study establishes just one of the larger effects that hearing loss has on a person’s general health.
This substantial and well-structured study forces us to reconsider hearing loss as a society.
How the research was conducted
Over 2000 individuals 50 or older were surveyed in this study carried out by dedicated researchers at the National Institute for Aging (NCOA). People with neglected hearing loss and people who used hearing aids were among the participants. Clinically relevant questions were asked to identify the levels of the following:
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 talk about hearing loss, this research, with the extra verification, becomes even more relevant.
How health and quality of life are affected by depression
Eating disorders such as severe obesity or significant weight loss are more likely in those who cope with depression, according to the American Psychological Association. They are more likely to experience insomnia and loss of memory.
While cooking, driving, and other activities, their decreased reaction time can result in severe injury. Healing is slower in individuals who suffer from depression and that can result in longer hospital stays.
The risk of falls for older people is also increased when an individual suffers from depression.
As the hearing loss advances, so does the depression. The individual usually becomes more and more isolated, lonely, and unable to care for him or herself.
But there’s an even sadder statistic.
Usage rates of hearing aids
About 75% of people who need hearing aids don’t wear them. That’s right. Many individuals have the means to shield themselves from depression by using hearing aids but for some reason abstain from taking the steps.
Why do so many individuals avoid using a hearing aid?
When asked why they don’t wear a hearing aid, many people say they own one. They think it makes them look old so they simply avoid using it. They’re embarrassed.
These individuals would benefit from a hearing aid upgrade. Contemporary hearing aids work better, and they are also more discreet and allow people to sync with devices. This makes them seem less like a hearing aid and more like an extension of their smart technology.
A smaller but significant number of individuals say hearing aids are too expensive. The link between untreated hearing loss and general health hazards is now starting to be recognized by states and insurance companies. They are helping to make hearing aids more affordable and accessible. Additionally, individuals who object to the cost of hearing aids also don’t understand how much-neglected hearing loss can cost them over time. They’re not aware of how hearing loss will impact their health and quality of life. Unaddressed hearing loss can increase your total healthcare costs by as much as 4o percent in just a few years.
What can you do to lessen hearing-associated depression symptoms?
Be proud to wear your hearing aid. Show people how much healthier you can feel when you can hear, wear your hearing aids proudly, and help erase the stigma.
Maximize your hearing in every setting with your modern hearing aid by taking some time to master the advanced features. You’re not getting the most out of your hearing aid by simply cranking up the volume. Consult us so you can try out these upgraded hearing aids.
If you feel you aren’t getting the most out of your hearing aid and are tempted to leave it off, talk to us today about how to make use of your hearing aid more effectively.