- Common Hearing Aid Problems & How to Fix Them - June 14, 2021
- Why People Avoid Treating Hearing Loss — and Why You Should Schedule a Hearing Test! - May 21, 2021
- Common Hearing Aid Problems & How to Fix Them - May 14, 2021
Communication is foundational to how we live our lives. We are consistently engaging with others at home, at work, while commuting etc. With today’s innovative technology, there are platforms and applications designed for people to do this conveniently (and constantly!). This becomes really challenging with hearing loss which is a common health concern that people are experiencing on a daily basis. Impaired hearing makes it difficult to absorb, hear, and process sound. This restricts what a person can hear and subsequently impacts how they respond. Strained communication can cause relationships to suffer because sharing time and information becomes increasingly difficult. It is so important to address any hearing loss; early detection can help with an easier transition to better hearing which can be life changing!
Impact of Hearing Loss
Impaired hearing can be caused by a variety of factors that include environmental exposure to loud noise, genetic history, and existing medical conditions. Hearing loss often happens gradually so people may not be aware that it is actually happening. This leads to people living with untreated hearing loss which can profoundly impact all aspects of a person’s life by causing:
- Difficulty following conversations because speech sounds muffled preventing you from hearing distinct words
- Needing to increase the volume on electronic devices (TV, phone, speaker)
- Frequently asking others to speak loudly and/or slowly
- Moving to quieter areas to have conversations
- Reading mouths to try and understand what a person is saying
- Tinnitus which is a ringing or buzzing noise in one or both ears
The experience of these symptoms makes having conversations (and listening) stressful and taxing for everyone involved. People often exert extra energy in an attempt to hear and this can lead to exhaustion. Social settings and gatherings can feel like too much work and people may want to avoid these environments. This can lead to social withdrawal and spending less time with friends and family. The cumulative impact of hearing loss can result in strained relationships.
Benefits of Treating Hearing Loss
The benefits of treatment allow people to manage their personal and professional life with greater ease. This can drastically improve one’s quality of life by:
- Enhancing Communication: hearing aids help people pick up and process sound. With an increased ability to hear, people can hear sounds and speech they had been missing or struggling with previously. Better hearing alleviates the stress and anxiety that is commonly felt when people have a hard time hearing. This allows people to not only hear what is being communicated to them but also respond effectively and timely. Engaging in communication becomes less difficult which supports people living their life with greater ease and comfort.
- Boosting Confidence: with an increased ability to hear, people do not have to continue the practices they developed to try and hear better: relying on others to speak loudly, asking others to repeat themselves, having to move to quieter areas to have conversations, rely on reading mouths etc. This saves people from using extra energy to hear and the fatigue (and frustration) often experienced. Wearing hearing aids allows people to move through conversations smoothly and not having to rely on others can really boost one’s confidence and sense of independence.
- Improving Health: people are able to be physically and socially active without struggling to hear and communicate. This allows people to overcome the coping mechanisms developed while navigating untreated hearing loss such as social withdrawal and isolation. Being able to participate more fully in daily activities with greater confidence and ease improves emotional and mental health.
Being able to engage in communication and simply feeling better can restore the pleasure, fun, and joy of being with others. This improves relationships by allowing people to be more present.
The first step you can take is scheduling an appointment to have your hearing assessed. Hearing tests are non-invasive, painless, and relatively quick. You will be informed of any impairment to your hearing, the specific type, and degree. Fortunately, there are several useful ways that hearing loss is treated. The most common treatment is hearing aids which are small electronic devices that help absorb, amplify, and process sound. This allows people to hear significantly better.