Hearing Loss Treatment: Why It Can’t WaitPublished On: May 22, 2019
Roughly 40 million adults in the United States suffer from some form of hearing loss. But, only about one-third of these people actually seek help to correct their hearing problems.
There are lots of reasons why people hesitate to seek help. They might think treatment is too expensive, or they might be embarrassed and not want to admit that they’re having trouble with their hearing.
If you have started noticing symptoms of hearing loss, it’s important to seek treatment as quickly as possible.
Read on to learn more about why hearing loss treatment cannot wait.
Symptoms of Hearing Loss
In order to seek treatment, you first need to recognize that there is a problem. It’s not uncommon for people to experience symptoms of hearing loss without realizing it.
If you’re not sure if you’re experiencing hearing loss, be on the lookout for the following symptoms:
- Speech and other sounds become muffled or distorted
- You have trouble understanding words or picking up on sounds, especially when there’s a lot of background noise or you’re in a crowded area
- You frequently have to ask others to speak slower, louder, or more clearly
- You regularly need to turn up the volume on the radio or television
- You have a hard time hearing people on the telephone
- You have to concentrate very hard to keep up with conversations
Many people who are losing their hearing may also find themselves withdrawing from conversations or avoiding social settings altogether.
Common Myths About Hearing Loss Treatment
Even if they know their hearing is not as good as it used to be, many people put off seeking hearing loss treatment.
They often put off treatment because they’ve fallen victim to one (or more) of these common myths:
Hearing Loss Can’t be Cured
You may not be able to reverse hearing loss, but you can definitely stop it from getting worse.
Treatments like hearing aids can help you to preserve your hearing, especially if you start wearing them as soon as you notice that your hearing has begun to fade.
Hearing Aids are Ugly and Uncomfortable
Hearing aid design has come a long way over the last few years. Now, there are lots of options that are so small that most people won’t even realize you’re wearing them.
Hearing aids are also a lot more comfortable than they used to be. They take some getting used to, of course, but after wearing them for a while, you’ll likely forget they’re even there!
Hearing Aids Will Make Noises Too Loud
You get to control the volume on your hearing aids. If noises are too loud after you put them in, you just have to adjust the dial to turn things down a bit. You definitely won’t feel like you’re always being yelled at while wearing them.
Hearing Aids Will Make Me Look Old
Do hearing aids make you look old? Maybe.
But, do you know what definitely makes you look old? Having to ask people to repeat everything they say and cranking up the volume on the television even when you’re in a quiet room.
Hearing aids can help you stay in the loop and maintain an active participant in conversations and events. That’s a lot better than isolating yourself because you can’t hear, right?
The Importance of Early Hearing Loss Treatment
Do you think you’re experiencing symptoms of hearing loss?
If so, it’s imperative that you seek treatment from an audiologist right away and stop believing in the myths listed above.
There are lots of reasons to seek treatment early, including the following:
Hearing Loss Affects Your Quality of Life
You may already have begun to avoid social situations and activities that you once enjoyed because you can’t hear. What kind of life is that to lead?
Hearing loss can have a significantly negative effect on your quality of life if you don’t treat it early.
If you can’t leave your house or have conversations with your loved ones, you’ll likely find that your life is a lot less pleasant than it used to be.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Lead to Cognitive Decline
Did you know that untreated hearing loss can also affect your cognitive abilities?
When you can’t hear as well as you once could, your brain misses out on sound stimulation. This, in turn, can bring about other cognitive health issues.
One study even found that individuals suffering from hearing loss experienced a significant decrease in their cognitive function. They also experienced a 50 percent increased risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Lead to Poor Mental Health
Untreated hearing loss can also wreak havoc on your mental and emotional health and well-being.
If you’re constantly isolating yourself because you can’t hear anything, you might begin to feel depressed.
Your self-esteem and confidence may suffer as well, and you might even find yourself feeling anxious when you do have to enter social settings.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Increase Your Injury Risk
If you don’t treat hearing loss, you may also face a greater risk of injuries.
There are a few ways that this works.
You might not be able to hear someone warning you to watch out when you’re out walking in the neighborhood or while you’re driving and trying to navigate a busy part of town.
Untreated hearing loss can throw off your reaction time, too. You may also be more prone to falls and the injuries that accompany them.
Learn More About Hearing Loss Treatment
As you can see, early hearing loss treatment is essential if you want to preserve your hearing and maintain your quality of life.
Do you want to learn more about the different hearing loss treatment options? If so, we have resources for you.
Check out some of our online resources today to learn more about hearing aids and other tools that can help you with your hearing loss.
These articles will empower you and arm you with the knowledge you need to advocate for your own hearing health.