Are you surprised to learn that hearing loss is about more than just your ears? Ears are the means of hearing, so the damage done to them due to aging, injury or illness is why someone can not hear, but did you know there is more to it than that The loss of a person’s hearing bleeds into a number of other aspects of their life. It’s a dramatic change for somebody who has always had the ability to hear. Take some ways that hearing loss has a significant impact on more than just the ears.
A 2006 report published by the Australian firm Access Economics states there is a connection between earning potential and hearing. They found that an individual with hearing loss will possibly make about 25 percent less than those that do listen, but why?
There are many things that could affect earnings. Somebody who works with no hearing assistance device like a hearing aid might miss out on weighty information. They may appear for a business meeting at 4 if it was actually at 2 pm, for example. Employers tend to appreciate those with astute attention to detail, which is a challenge when you can’t hear the details.
Working environments can be noisy and crazy, too. A individual with hearing loss can quickly become confused with all that noise around them. They will struggle to speak on the telephone, to listen to clients and to understand what colleagues are saying because in a noisy environment the desktop sounds like clacking keyboards or an air conditioner motor become pronounced.
Some of the same problems at work become an issue at home. Hearing loss has the potential to cause conflict, particularly when the individual with the problem continues to deny it. Little things such as saying “what” a lot during discussions and turning the TV up too loud irritate friends, family members, and spouses.
They may attempt to intervene and encourage this person to recognize their hearing loss, and that leads to friction, as well. It is very common for people with hearing loss to isolate themselves and refuse to go out and spend time with others. They struggle to keep up with conversations, so they so what the can to avoid them.
Mental Health Concerns
The issues at work and house take a toll on mental health over time. A 2014 study conducted by the U.S. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders found a cause and effect relationship between hearing loss and melancholy. Their research indicates an increased risk of depression, particularly among girls and individuals under the age of 70. Their risk of depression goes from 5 percent to about 11 percent with hearing loss.
A second study by the Senior Research Group suggests that the chance of mental health problems including depression, anxiety and paranoia goes up when a individual with hearing loss does not use hearing aids. The study participants who didn’t wear hearing aids reported everything from feelings of despair to sudden fits of anger more frequently than those that did wear them.
Safety is always an issue for the hearing impaired. Most security systems, while it is a smoke or carbon monoxide detector or a perimeter alert, work based on noise. They exude a high-frequency noise when there’s a danger. Even people with minor hearing loss can have difficulty hearing high pitched tones.
Personal security becomes a problem when a person with hearing loss spans the road or drives a car, too. Sound serves to signal problems like a car coming down the road or a horn honking.
Medical science has made a link between cognitive decline and hearing loss. It’s not clear why people with hearing loss have a greater risk of dementia. The current theory is that the mind struggles to listen and to compensate, it robs other vital functions like short-term memory.
A 2011 study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine discovered that even a person with minor hearing loss is twice as likely to develop dementia. Moderate hearing loss increases the risk by three times and a person with severe hearing impairment is five times more likely to get Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Hearing health is just one factor in memory loss conditions, but it’s an important one.
When someone has hearing loss, it is true there is probably something wrong with their ears, but that’s just where it begins. The fantastic news is that getting help in the form of hearing aids and other treatment options lowers the chance of mental health problems, dementia and the various issues associated with hearing decline.