As we get older, loss of hearing is commonly perceived as a fact of life. Lots of older Americans have some form of hearing loss or tinnitus, which is a constant ringing in the ears. But if it’s such an accepted condition, why do so many people won’t admit that they suffer from hearing loss?
A new study from Canada says that hearing loss is experienced by more than 50 percent of Canadians, but that 77% of those people don’t document any issues. In the US, over 48 million individuals have some type of hearing loss, but many do not attempt to deal with it. Whether this denial is on purpose or not is debatable, but the fact remains that a substantial number of people allow their loss of hearing to go unchecked – which, down the road, could bring about significant issues.
Why is Loss of Hearing Not Recognized by Some people?
It’s a complex matter. Hearing loss is a gradual process, and some people may not even notice that they have a harder time hearing things or understanding people than they used to. Or, more frequently, they may blame it on something else – the person they’re talking to is muttering, volumes aren’t turned up loud enough, or there’s too much background noise. hearing loss can be blamed, unfortunately, on quite a few things, and people’s first instinct is not normally going to be to get checked out or have a hearing test.
On the other hand, there may be some individuals who know they’re suffering from hearing loss but refuse to admit it. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors flat out deny that they are suffering from a hearing issue. They hide their issue in any way they can, either they perceive a stigma surrounding hearing loss or because they don’t want to admit to having a problem.
The concern with both of these scenarios is that by denying or not noticing you have a hearing problem you could actually be negatively impacting your general health.
There Can be Serious Repercussions From Neglected Hearing Loss
Loss of hearing does not only affect your ears – it has been connected to various conditions like depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline, and it can also be a symptom of high blood pressure and heart disease.
Research has revealed that individuals who have addressed their hearing loss with cognitive therapy, changes of diet and hearing aids have better general health and longer life expectancy.
It’s important to acknowledge the signs of hearing loss – trouble carrying on conversations, cranking up the volume on the radio or TV, or a persistent ringing or humming in your ears.
What Can be Done to Manage Hearing Loss?
There are a number of treatments you can do to get your loss of hearing under control. Hearing aids are the most prevalent type of treatment, and you won’t have the same kinds of issues that your parents or grandparents did because hearing aid technology has advanced appreciably. Hearing aids now have the ability to filter out background noise and wind, while also connecting wirelessly to devices like your TV, tablet, or radio.
A dietary changes could also have a positive effect on the health of your hearing if you have anemia. Eating more foods that are rich in iron has been shown to help people fight tinnitus and hearing loss since iron deficiency anemia has been demonstrated to result in loss of hearing.
Having your hearing tested regularly, however, is the most important thing you can do.
Are you worried you may have hearing issues? Schedule an appointment for a hearing examination.