Even if you have an active, healthy lifestyle, you could develop hearing loss and specific cognitive concerns as you grow older. And a strong link between the two has been observed by scientists which should never be ignored. So keep that hearing aid turned on.
Individuals with untreated hearing loss are two times as likely to deal with depression. In contrast to individuals who use a hearing aid, regular feelings of sadness were reported 27% more in those who have neglected hearing loss.
They were also 24% more likely to quit doing things they once loved and 39% more likely to feel like people are angry with them for no reason.
There’s an even more troubling statistic you should be aware of, though you won’t like it very much. Keep that hearing aid turned on!
Our ideas about hearing loss will be entirely changed by this study
Age-related hearing loss has been regarded as a harmless affliction for centuries. It was thought that the other senses would merely compensate. People would simply go on with their lives attempting to live safely, healthily, and happily. Apart from hearing impairment, it was believed that loss of hearing had no other negative health effects.
Of course we now know that’s not the case. This study demonstrates just one of the larger effects that hearing loss has on a person’s general health.
As a society, we will need to rethink hearing loss based on this well-structured and significant study.
How was this study done?
Over 2000 individuals 50 or older were surveyed in this study carried out by dedicated researchers at the National Institute for Aging (NCOA). People with untreated hearing loss and people who used hearing aids were among the participants. Clinically pertinent questions were asked to identify the levels of the following:
The study took a ground-breaking step by introducing over 2000 family members of the study participants. What they reported helped to give the participant’s statements validity. When we talk about hearing loss, this study, with the extra verification, becomes even more relevant.
How depression impacts health and quality of life
Eating disorders such as acute obesity or significant weight loss are more likely in people who suffer from depression, according to the American Psychological Association. Memory loss and insomnia are also more predominant in those with neglected hearing loss.
They have decreased reaction time, which can result in significant injuries whilst cooking, cleaning, driving, and other activities. Those with depression have even been found to heal more slowly, leading to complications and lengthy hospital stays.
The danger of falling for older people is also elevated when an individual has depression.
Depression worsens as hearing loss progresses. The individual often becomes more and more isolated, lonely, and unable to care for him or herself.
Now, let’s look at a really sad statistic.
Hearing aid usage rates
About 75% of people who need hearing aids don’t wear them. Yup! For many, this increased rate of depression and all of its negative effects are entirely unnecessary and preventable, yet they’re not taking steps to stop it.
Why so many decide not to use a hearing aid
When asked why they don’t use a hearing aid, many individuals say they do own one. They think it makes them look old so they just neglect using it. It makes them embarrassed.
These individuals would benefit from a hearing aid update. Present day hearing aids can sync to your smart devices, work better, and are more subtle. This makes them feel less like a hearing aid and more like an extension of their smart technology.
A smaller but significant number of people say they can’t afford one. The link between untreated hearing loss and overall health hazards is now beginning to be recognized by states and insurance companies. Hearing aids are, because of this, becoming more available and affordable. Additionally, people who object to the price of hearing aids also don’t realize how much-untreated hearing loss can cost them over time. They’re not aware of how hearing loss will affect their health and quality of life. In only a few years, your overall health cost can go up by as much as 40% because of untreated hearing loss.
How can hearing related depression symptoms be minimized?
Be proud to wear your hearing aid. Show people how much healthier you can feel when you’re able to hear, wear your hearing aids proudly, and help erase the stigma.
Take a little time to learn the advanced features of your modern hearing aid to maximize your hearing experience in every situation. You’re not getting the most from your hearing aid by simply cranking up the volume. If you haven’t upgraded your hearing aid in a while, meet with us for a demo.
If you feel you’re not getting the most out of your hearing aid and are tempted to leave it off, talk to us today about how to use your hearing aid more successfully.