As we age, loss of hearing is normally thought to be an inescapable fact of life. Many older Americans have some type of hearing loss or tinnitus, which is a persistent ringing in the ears. But if a condition like this is so accepted, why is it that so many people won’t admit that they deal with loss of hearing?
A new study from Canada suggests that over half of all middle aged or older Canadians suffer from some type of loss of hearing, but that 77% of those individuals do not document any problems. Some form of hearing loss is experienced by more than 48 million Americans and untreated. It’s up for debate whether this denial is on purpose or not, but either way, loss of hearing is ignored by a substantial number of individuals – which could result in considerable problems later on in life.
Why is Hearing Loss Missed by Some people?
It’s a tricky question. It’s a gradual process when somebody loses their hearing, and difficulty comprehending people and hearing things go unnoticed. Or, more commonly, they might blame it on something else – the person they’re speaking to is muttering, the TV volume is too low, or background noise is too high. There are, unfortunately, quite a few things that hearing loss can be blamed on, and people’s first instinct is not usually going to be to get examined or get a hearing test.
It also happens that some individuals just won’t accept that they have hearing loss. Another study conducted in the United States shows that lots of seniors flat out refuse to admit that they have a hearing problem. They mask their problem in any way they can, either because they don’t want to admit to having a problem or because of perceived stigmas attached to hearing loss.
The difficulty is, you could be negatively affecting your general health by ignoring your hearing loss.
Untreated Hearing Loss Can Have a Debilitating Affect
Hearing loss does not exclusively affect your ears – it has been linked to different ailments like depression, anxiety, and cognitive decline, and it can also be a sign of high blood pressure and heart disease.
Research has demonstrated that people who have addressed their hearing loss with cognitive therapy, diet changes and hearing aids have better all-around health and longer life expectancy.
It’s necessary to identify the signs of hearing loss – trouble having conversations, turning up the volume on the radio or TV, or a chronic ringing or humming in your ears.
What Can be Done About Hearing Loss?
You can control your hearing loss with several treatment options. Hearing aids are the most prevalent type of treatment, and hearing aid tech has developed by leaps and bounds over the last few years so it’s not likely you’ll encounter the same issues your grandparents or parents did. Modern hearing aids come with Bluetooth connectivity so they can connect wirelessly to your phone or TV and they have the ability to filter out background noise and wing.
A changes in the foods you eat might also have a healthy impact on the health of your hearing if you have anemia. Eating more foods that are high in iron has been shown to help people fight tinnitus and loss of hearing since iron deficiency anemia has been demonstrated to lead to hearing loss.
Getting your hearing checked regularly, however, is the most significant thing you can do.
Do you suspect that you’re suffering from loss of hearing? Come in and get checked.