During the standard working years, many individuals build much of their perceived self-worth up around their occupation. Their self-image is often based on what job they have, their position, and how much they make.
What’s the first thing you think when someone asks, “So what do you do”? It’s probably to tell them about your occupation.
It’s not pleasant to consider what you would do if something took your living away. But there’s a career-buster out there that should make anyone who loves their work perk up and listen.
The troubling connection between job success and untreated hearing loss is precisely that career killer.
Unemployment Rate is Higher With Untreated Hearing Loss
A person with neglected hearing problems is over 200% more likely to be underemployed or unemployed. Underemployment is commonly defined as the condition of employees not earning up to their potential, either because they aren’t working full time or because the work does not use all of their marketable skills.
Those who have neglected hearing loss face countless challenges in almost any occupation. Doctors need to be capable of hearing their patients. If they’re going to safely work together, construction workers need to be able to communicate. Even a librarian would find it hard to assist library patrons without her hearing.
Lots of individuals remain in the same line of work their entire lives. They know it really well. If they can no longer do that job well due to neglected hearing loss, it’s tough to make a living doing something else.
The Potential Hearing Impairment Wage Gap
Along with unemployment, those with hearing impairment all have the tendency to experience a substantial wage gap, making around 75 cents for every dollar a person with normal hearing earns. This wage gap is backed by numerous independent studies that reveal that an individual loses up to $12,000 in income each year.
How much they lose closely correlates with the severity of the hearing impairment. According to a study conducted on 80,000 participants, even people with mild hearing loss are potentially losing money.
What Struggles do Individuals With Hearing Loss Confront on The Job?
Job stress causes someone with hearing loss to take sick days 5 times more often than someone with normal hearing.
Being incapable of hearing causes added stress that other workers don’t experience on a moment-to-moment basis. Picture being in a meeting and straining to hear while everyone else is taking their hearing for granted. And missing an important piece of information is always a worry.
That’s even more stressful.
While at work or at home, it’s three times more likely that someone with neglected hearing loss will have a fall. Your ability to work is impacted.
In addition to on the job issues, individuals with untreated hearing loss are at increased danger of:
- Social Isolation
Reduced productivity is the consequence of all this. People with hearing loss experience so many challenges, both at work and in their personal lives, regrettably being passed over for a promotion is also a very real possibility.
Luckily, there’s a really bright silver lining to this dismal career outlook.
An Effective Career Strategy
Studies also reveal that having your hearing loss treated can eliminate the unemployment and the wage gap.
The wage gap can be decreased by 90 – 100% for somebody with mild hearing loss who uses hearing aids, as revealed by a study done by Better Hearing Institute.
About 77% of that gap can be eliminated for a person with moderate hearing loss. That gets them almost up to the income of an individual in the same job with normal hearing.
Even though hearing loss can be managed it isn’t uncommon for people to neglect it during their working years. They feel that losing their hearing is embarrassing. It makes them feel old.
They may think that hearing aids are simply too costly for them. They most likely don’t realize that if hearing loss is neglected, it worsens more quickly in addition to triggering the other health problems pointed out above.
These studies are even more compelling when these common objections are taken into consideration. Leaving your hearing unaddressed is probably more expensive than you know. It’s time to have a hearing exam if you’re trying to decide if you should use hearing aids at work. Call us and we can help you decide whether hearing aids would help.