Hearing loss – it’s generally considered a given as we get older. Hearing loss is experienced by many older Americans as is tinnitus or a ringing in the ears. But if a condition like this is so accepted, why do so many people won’t admit that they have hearing loss?
A new study from Canada reports that hearing loss is experienced by over half of Canadians, but that 77% of those people don’t report any concerns. Some type of hearing loss is impacting over 48 million Americans and goes un-addressed. Whether this denial is deliberate or not is up for debate, but either way, hearing loss is neglected by a significant number of individuals – which could cause substantial problems later on in life.
Why do Some People Not Recognize They Have Loss of Hearing?
It’s a tricky matter. Hearing loss is a slow process, and some people might not recognize that they are having a more difficult time hearing things or understanding people than they once did. Many times they blame everyone else around them – they believe everyone is mumbling, volumes aren’t turned up loud enough, or background noise is too high. There are, unfortunately, quite a few things that hearing loss can be blamed on, and people’s first reaction is not usually going to be to get checked out or get a hearing test.
It also happens that some people just won’t acknowledge that they suffer from hearing loss. Another study conducted in the United States shows that many seniors who suffer from hearing problems flat out deny it. They do what they can to mask their problem, either because they don’t want to acknowledge an issue or because of perceived stigmas associated with hearing loss.
The concern is, you could be negatively influencing your general health by ignoring your hearing loss.
There Can be Extreme Consequences From Neglected Hearing Loss
Loss of hearing does not only impact your ears – heart disease and high blood pressure have also been connected to hearing loss as well as anxiety, depression, and cognitive decline.
Research has shown that people who have treated their hearing loss using 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 ringing or humming in the ears, problems having conversations, needing to turn up the volume of your TV or radio.
How Can You Manage Hearing Loss?
You can control your hearing loss with a number of treatment options. Hearing aids are the most common type of treatment, and hearing aid technology has developed by leaps and bounds over the last several years so it’s unlikely you’ll encounter the same issues your parents or grandparents did. Contemporary hearing aids come with Bluetooth functionality so they can connect wirelessly to your phone or TV and they have the ability to filter out background noise and wing.
A changing the way you eat could also have a beneficial impact on your hearing health if you suffer from anemia. Since anemia iron deficiency has been revealed to cause loss of hearing, people who suffer from tinnitus can be helped by consuming foods that are high in iron.
Getting your hearing examined on a regular basis, however, is the most important thing you can do.
Are you concerned you could have hearing problems? Visit us and get tested.