Are you taken aback to learn that hearing loss is more than just your ears? Ears are the means of hearing, so the damage done to them because of aging, injury or disease 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 many other aspects of their life. It is a dramatic change for someone who has always been able to hear. Consider some ways that hearing loss has a profound impact on more than just the ears.
A 2006 report released by the Australian company Access Economics states there’s a connection between salary potential and hearing. They found that an individual with hearing loss will potentially make about 25 percent less than the ones that do listen, but why?
There are a lot of things that could impact earnings. Someone who works with no hearing assistance device such as a hearing aid may miss out on serious material. They might appear for a business meeting at 4 when it was actually at 2 pm, for instance. Managers tend to value those with shrewd attention to detail, and that’s a challenge when you can not hear the specifics.
Working environments can be loud and crazy, too. A individual with hearing loss can quickly become confused with all that sound around them. They will struggle to speak on the telephone, to listen to clients and to understand what coworkers are saying because in a noisy environment the desktop sounds like clacking keyboards or an air conditioner vent become pronounced.
Some of the very same problems at work become a problem at home. Hearing loss has the potential to cause conflict, particularly when the individual with the problem continues to deny it. Little things like saying “what” a lot during conversations and turning the TV up too loud irritate friends, relatives, and spouses.
They may attempt to intervene and encourage this person to recognize their hearing loss, which leads to friction, as well. It is extremely 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 prevent them.
Mental Health Concerns
The issues at work and house take a toll on mental health over time. A 2014 study performed by the U.S. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders found a cause and effect relationship between hearing loss and melancholy. Their study indicates an increased risk of depression, particularly among women and individuals under the age of 70. Their risk of depression goes from 5 percent to approximately 11 percent with hearing loss.
A second study by the Senior Research Group indicates that the risk of mental health problems including depression, anxiety and paranoia goes up when a person 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 often than those who did wear them.
Security is always an issue for the hearing impaired. Most security systems, while it’s a smoke or carbon monoxide detector or a perimeter alarm, work based on noise. They exude a high-frequency noise when there’s a danger. Even people with slight hearing loss can have difficulty hearing high pitched tones.
Personal safety becomes an issue when a person with hearing loss crosses the road or drives a car, too. Sound serves to indicate 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 brain struggles to hear and to compensate, it robs other vital functions like memory.
A 2011 study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine found that someone with minor hearing loss is twice as likely to develop dementia. Moderate hearing loss increases the risk by three times and an individual with severe hearing impairment is five times more likely to have Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. Hearing health is just one factor in memory loss conditions, but it’s an important one.
When a person has hearing loss, it is true there’s likely something wrong with their ears, but that’s just where it starts. The fantastic news is that getting help in the kind of hearing aids and other treatment choices reduces the risk of mental health problems, dementia and the various issues associated with hearing decline.