As we get older, hearing loss is generally looked at as a fact of life. Lots of older Americans have some kind of hearing loss or tinnitus, which is a persistent ringing in the ears. But if a condition like this is so accepted, why is it that so many people won’t admit that they suffer from loss of hearing?
A new study from Canada posits that more than 50 percent of all Canadians middle-aged and older cope with some form of loss of hearing, but no issues were reported at all by more than 77% percent of those. In the US, over 48 million individuals have some form of hearing loss, but many do not attempt to deal with it. It’s debatable whether this denial is on purpose or not, but in either case, hearing loss is disregarded by a considerable number of people – which could lead to considerable issues later on in life.
Why do Some Individuals Not Recognize They Suffer From Loss of Hearing?
It’s a tricky question. It’s a gradual process when someone loses their hearing, and some people might not even notice that they have a more difficult time hearing things or understanding people than they once did. Or, more commonly, they may blame it on something else – they think that everyone is mumbling, the TV volume is too low, or there’s too much background noise. There are, unfortunately, quite a few things that hearing loss can be blamed on, and having a hearing test or getting checked out, usually, is not a person’s first instinct.
On the other hand, there may be some individuals who know they’re suffering from hearing loss but won’t accept it. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors simply deny that they have a hearing issue. They hide their issue in any way they can, either because they don’t want to admit to having an issue or because of perceived stigmas associated with hearing loss.
The concern is, you could be negatively affecting your general health by ignoring your hearing loss.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Have a Devastating Affect
Hearing loss does not only affect your ears – heart disease and high blood pressure have also been connected to hearing loss along with anxiety, depression, and cognitive decline.
Research has demonstrated that people suffering from loss of hearing generally have shorter life expectancy rates and their level of health is not as good as people who have dealt with their hearing loss using hearing aids, dietary changes, or cognitive behavioral treatment.
It’s crucial to identify the signs of hearing loss – difficulty carrying on conversations, cranking up the volume on the TV and radio, or a lingering ringing or humming in your ears.
What Can You Do to Address Hearing Loss?
There are a number of treatment options you can do to get your hearing loss under control. Hearing aids are the most common form of treatment, and hearing aid tech has developed by leaps and bounds over the past several years so it’s unlikely you’ll encounter the same issues your parents or grandparents did. Contemporary hearing aids have Bluetooth connectivity so they can connect wirelessly to your smartphone or TV and they have the ability to filter out wind and background noise.
A dietary changes could also have a healthy impact on your hearing health if you have anemia. Consuming more foods that are rich in iron has been discovered to help people combat tinnitus and loss of hearing since iron deficiency anemia has been demonstrated to lead to loss of hearing.
The most essential thing you can do, though, is to get your hearing assessed regularly.
Do you suspect that you’re suffering from loss of hearing? Come in and get tested.