Man with hearing loss looks concerned but won't get hearing aids.

Your overall life can be seriously affected by hearing loss, in a way that goes beyond the inability to hear. Losing your hearing will get in the way of everyday activities and can strain relationships.

A survey conducted by AARP found that quality of life is more seriously impacted by hearing loss than:

  • Stroke
  • Obesity
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes

There are lots of people who don’t seek help with their hearing loss in spite of the fact that it negatively impacts their lives. A perceived stigma attached to loss of hearing is one reason why people who have hearing loss don’t seek out the treatment they need, according to researchers. People are scared they will be treated differently if people learn they are suffering from hearing loss. This perception can distort how they see themselves whether they are young or old.

It’s Not Only You

As lifespans grow longer, hearing loss has become more prevalent, despite the fact that it can effect people of every age, The World Health Organization reports that over 1.1 billion people are in danger of hearing loss and the perceptions that come with it, many of them young adults. Hearing loss is, in fact, one of a young adult’s biggest health threats. Even as the number of people with hearing loss continues to grow, the resistance to seeking assistance for hearing loss seems to persist. How does this affect one’s overall health?

How Is Hearing Loss Viewed?

By definition, stigma means a brand that marks somebody as inferior and that pretty much says it all. Many people with hearing loss are worried they will come across as older than they are, less healthy, or less capable.

Historically, there is some foundation for this concern. A 2010 study found people were not as well accepted when they had hearing loss. But the data from this research is almost a decade old. This perception is improving as hearing loss is becoming more prevalent. Celebrities visibly wear hearing aids and the technology is becoming more sophisticated, stylish, and fun. Research reveals that some other age related health issues, such as dementia, may be slowed or even prevented by getting treatment. This is changing peoples mind about hearing loss and also their hearts. Some people still won’t seek help in spite of this research.

Why Does It Matter?

Don’t allow your fear of negative perception stop you from getting treatment or you may suffer long-term health consequences. More people get colonoscopies than hearing tests according to an AARP survey. Not recognizing your hearing loss, not getting a hearing examination and seeking treatment will take a physical toll, this is especially true over time.

Consequences of Undiagnosed or Untreated Hearing Loss

Not taking care of your hearing loss can have the following health consequences;

Fatigue

In life, everything is more challenging if you are struggling to hear. You have to work harder than others to hear conversations and sounds. It becomes necessary to put more effort into keeping safe, too, because you can’t hear that car coming or someone walking behind you. You will become chronically fatigued just by trying to hear day-to-day sounds.

Common Headaches and Migraines

Stress and fear can lead to migraines and other forms of headaches. Studies have shown a link, though you may not have realized there was a connection, between certain forms of hearing loss and migraines. The constant extra effort of your brain to make up for what you can’t hear can cause your head to hurt even if you don’t normally get migraines.

Mental Health

As a consequence of your untreated loss of hearing, you may be facing mental health issues like depression and social anxiety. Hearing loss can lead to dementia and frequently causes social isolation. Moodiness and reduced energy levels go along with these other challenges.

Overcoming Negative Perceptions of Hearing Loss

Taking the first step and seek out help if you want to conquer these negative perceptions. It is possible to treat hearing loss. Your only causing your own hardship by not getting help.

There might not even be any reason to stress out since not all hearing loss is permanent. Something as simple as earwax buildup could be the cause, but you won’t know that unless you make an appointment to get a hearing test.

Make sure you deal with it if it turns out that you do have hearing loss. Nowadays hearing aids come in many shapes and sizes. If you don’t want other people to be aware of your hearing loss, then get a device that is less noticeable.

Most importantly, show everyone that you have lots of confidence in spite of your hearing loss. You can be just as active and healthy as everyone else, so wear your hearing aids with confidence. The perception of people with hearing loss will be changed if you act in this way. Negative perceptions are social poisons so be strong and raise awareness to change them.

Hearing loss is a medical condition, not a problem. Get a hearing examination today.