Are you taken aback to learn that hearing loss is more than just your ears? Ears are the mechanisms of hearing, so the harm done to them because of aging, injury or disease is why someone can’t hear, but did you know there is more to it than the loss of one’s hearing bleeds into a number of other facets of their life. It is a dramatic change for someone who has always been able to hear. Take some ways that hearing loss has a significant effect 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 could possibly make about 25 percent less than those that do hear, but why?
There are many things that could affect earnings. Somebody who works with no hearing assistance device like a hearing aid might miss out on crucial material. They might show up for a company meeting at 4 if it was really at 2 pm, for example. Employers tend to appreciate those with shrewd attention to detail, and that’s a challenge when you can not hear the details.
Work environments can be noisy and crazy, too. A individual with hearing loss can become confused with that sound around them. They will struggle to speak on the telephone, to listen to customers and to understand what coworkers are saying because in a loud environment the background sounds like clicking keyboards or an air conditioner motor become pronounced.
Some of the same problems at work become a problem at home. Hearing loss has the potential to cause conflict, especially when the person with the problem continues to deny it. Little things such as saying “what” a lot during discussions 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, and that leads to friction, also. It’s very common for people with hearing loss to detach 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 prevent them.
Mental Health Concerns
The issues at work and home take a toll on mental health over time. A 2014 study performed by the U.S. National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders discovered a cause and effect relationship between hearing loss and depression. Their research indicates 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 from the Senior Research Group suggests that the risk of mental health issues including depression, anxiety and paranoia goes up when a individual with hearing loss doesn’t use hearing aids. The study participants who didn’t wear hearing aids reported everything from feelings of sadness to sudden fits of anger more frequently than those that did wear them.
Security is always a concern for the hearing impaired. Most security systems, while it is a smoke or carbon monoxide detector or a perimeter alarm, work based on sound. They exude a high-frequency noise when there is a danger. Even people with minor hearing loss can have trouble hearing high pitched tones.
Personal safety becomes an issue when a person with hearing loss spans 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’s not clear why people with hearing loss have a greater risk of dementia. The current theory is that the brain struggles to listen and to compensate, it robs other vital functions like short-term memory.
A 2011 study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine found that a person 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 forms of dementia. Hearing health is just one factor in memory loss conditions, but it is an important one.
When someone has hearing loss, it’s true there is 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 options reduces the chance of mental health problems, dementia and the different issues associated with hearing decline.