Assistive listening devices and hearing aids can be used to treat the prevalent condition of hearing loss. But hearing loss is often ignored and untreated. This can result in greater depression rates and feelings of separation in those with hearing loss.
It can also lead to a breakdown in personal and work relationships, which itself will foster more feelings of depression and isolation. The key to putting a stop to that downward spiral is treating your hearing loss.
Hearing loss and depression
We’ve known that hearing loss can cause feelings of separation and depression for a long time now. One study of individuals with neglected hearing loss found that adults 50 years old and older were more likely to report symptoms of depression, along with indications of paranoia or anxiety. They also reported being less socially active. A lot of them had the feeling that people were getting angry at them and they didn’t know why. But when those individuals got hearing aids, they reported improvements in their social condition, and other people in their life also noticed the difference.
Another study found that people between ages 18 and 70, reported an increased sense of depression if they had hearing loss of more than 25 dB. People over the age of 70 with self-reported hearing loss did not show a significant difference in depression rates compared to people without hearing loss. But that still means that a large part of the population isn’t getting the help they need to improve their lives.
Mental health can be impacted by refusal to use hearing aids or to lack of awareness
It seems like it would be clear that you should get your hearing loss treated when you read reports like this. Maybe you think your hearing is okay. You think that others are mumbling.
You may just think it costs too much.
It’s important to get a hearing exam if you think that you are being left out of interactions or are feeling anxious or depressed. We can talk about your options if we do find hearing loss. It could help you feel much better.