Hearing loss is a common problem that can be alleviated easily by using hearing aids and assistive listening devices. But a higher incident of depression and feelings of solitude happens when hearing loss is neglected and undiscovered.
It can also lead to a breakdown in work and personal relationships, which itself contributes to more feelings of isolation and depression. This is a difficulty that doesn’t have to take place, and getting that hearing loss treated is the best way to end the downward spiral.
Hearing Loss Has Been Linked to Depression by Many Studies
Researchers have discovered in several studies that neglected hearing loss is connected to the progression of depressive symptoms – and this isn’t a new phenomenon. One study of individuals who suffer from neglected hearing loss discovered that adults 50 years or older were more likely to report symptoms of depression, and signs of paranoia or anxiety. And it was also more likely that that group would retreat from social engagement. Many stated that they felt as if people were getting frustrated with them for no apparent reason. Still, those who wore hearing aids noted improvements in their relationships, and the people around them – family, co-workers, and friends – also saw improvements.
A different study discovered that people between the ages of 18 and 70, revealed a more acute sense of depression if they suffered from hearing loss of more than 25 dB. Individuals over 70 with a self-reported hearing loss didn’t demonstrate a major difference in depression rates compared to individuals without hearing loss. But all other demographics have people who aren’t getting the help that they need for their hearing loss. Another study found that hearing aid users had a lower reported rate of depression symptoms than those individuals who suffered from hearing loss but who did not use hearing aids.
Lack of Awareness or Unwillingness to Wear Hearing Aids Affects Mental Health
It would seem obvious that with these kinds of outcomes people would wish to get help with their hearing loss. But people don’t get help for two main reasons. One is that some simply don’t think their hearing is that impaired. They have themselves convinced that others are mumbling or even that they are speaking quietly on purpose. Also, it’s quite common for people to have no clue they have a hearing impairment. It seems, to them, that people don’t like to talk to them.
If you are someone who regularly thinks people are talking quietly or mumbling and it’s causing you to feel anxiety or even depression, it’s time for a hearing examination. If your hearing specialist detects hearing problems, hearing aid options should be talked about. You could possibly feel a lot better if you consult a hearing specialist.