As we age, hearing loss is commonly looked at as an inescapable fact of life. Loss of hearing is experienced by lots of older Americans and so is tinnitus or a ringing in the ears. But if it’s such an accepted condition, why is it that so many people deny that they have hearing loss?
A new study from Canada says that hearing loss is experienced by more than half of Canadians, but no problems were reported at all by more than 77% percent of those. In the US, over 48 million individuals have some kind of hearing loss, but many do not try to address it. If this denial is on purpose or not is debatable, but either way, loss of hearing is ignored by a substantial number of individuals – which could bring about significant issues down the road.
Why do Some People Not Recognize They Suffer From Loss of Hearing?
It’s a complex matter. Loss of hearing is a slow process, and some people may not notice that they have a harder time hearing things or understanding people than they used to. Or, more frequently, they may blame it on something else – the person they’re speaking to is mumbling, the TV volume is too low, or background noise is too high. hearing loss can be blamed, unfortunately, on a number of things, and having a hearing examination or getting checked out, normally, is not a person’s first reaction.
It also happens that some people just won’t accept that they suffer from hearing loss. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors simply refuse to admit that they are suffering from a hearing issue. They hide their problem however they can, either because they don’t want to admit to having a problem or because of perceived stigmas attached to hearing loss.
The problem with both of these scenarios is that by rejecting or not recognizing you have a problem hearing you could actually be negatively impacting your overall health.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Have a Debilitating Affect
It’s not only your ears that are affected by loss of hearing – high blood pressure and heart disease have also been connected to hearing loss along with anxiety, depression, and mental decline.
Research has demonstrated that individuals who have managed their loss of hearing with cognitive therapy, diet changes and hearing aids have better all-around health and longer life spans.
It’s important to acknowledge the indications of hearing loss – continual humming or ringing in the ears, difficulty carrying on conversations, needing to crank up the volume of your radio or TV.
What Can be Done About Loss of Hearing?
You can control your hearing loss using a number of treatments. Hearing aids are the type of treatment that is the most common, and you won’t experience the same kinds of issues that your grandparents or parents did because hearing aid technology has advanced appreciably. Hearing aids now have the ability to filter out background noise and wind, while also wirelessly connecting to devices like your TV, tablet, or radio.
A changes in your diet might also have a beneficial effect on the health of your hearing if you suffer from anemia. Consuming more foods that are high in iron has been discovered to help people combat tinnitus and loss of hearing since iron deficiency anemia has been revealed to result in hearing loss.
The most important thing you can do, however, is to have your hearing examined routinely.
Do you suspect that might have loss of hearing? Visit us and get tested.