Are you taken aback to learn that hearing loss is about more than just your ears? Ears are the means of hearing, so the harm done to them because of aging, injury or illness is why someone can not hear, but did you know there’s more to it than the loss of a person’s hearing bleeds into many other facets of their life. It’s a dramatic change for somebody who has always had the ability to hear. Consider some ways that hearing loss has a significant effect on more than just the ears.
A 2006 report published by the Australian company Access Economics states there’s a connection between salary potential and hearing. They found that an individual with hearing loss could potentially make about 25 percent less than those 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 information. They may appear for a company meeting at 4 when it was actually at 2 pm, for instance. Employers tend to appreciate those with astute attention to detail, and that’s a challenge when you can not hear the specifics.
Working environments can be loud and chaotic, too. A person with hearing loss can quickly become confused with all that noise around them. They will struggle to talk on the phone, to listen to clients and to understand what colleagues are saying because in a loud environment the desktop sounds like clicking keyboards or an air conditioner vent become pronounced.
Some of the very same problems at work become an issue at home. Hearing loss has the potential to cause conflict, especially when the person 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, family members, and spouses.
They may attempt to intervene and encourage this individual to recognize their hearing loss, which leads to friction, also. It’s very common for someone with hearing loss to isolate themselves and refuse to go out and spend some time with other people. They struggle to keep up with conversations, so that 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 study suggests an increased risk of depression, particularly among women and people 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 risk of mental health problems including depression, anxiety and paranoia goes up when a individual with hearing loss doesn’t use hearing aids. The study participants who did not wear hearing aids reported everything from feelings of sadness to sudden fits of anger more often than those who did wear them.
Security is always a concern for the hearing impaired. Most security systems, whether it’s a smoke or carbon monoxide detector or a perimeter alarm, work based on noise. They emit a high-frequency noise when there is a danger. Even people with slight hearing loss can have trouble hearing high pitched tones.
Personal security becomes a problem when a individual with hearing loss crosses 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 connection between cognitive decline and hearing loss. It isn’t clear why people with hearing loss have a greater risk of dementia. The current theory is that the mind struggles to hear and to compensate, it robs other vital functions like memory.
A 2011 study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine found that even someone 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 have 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 a person has hearing loss, it is true there’s probably 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 options reduces the chance of mental health issues, dementia and the different issues associated with hearing decline.