Today, approximately 1 in 10 Americans are aware they are living with some type of hearing loss. More than half of people living with hearing loss have gone years without getting a hearing test. What does this mean for you?
Why is treating hearing loss important?
As naturally social creatures, human beings thrive through social interaction, communication throughout daily life and connecting to our surroundings. Living with untreated hearing loss works against our innate behaviors, often causing social isolation, depression, anxiety, withdrawn behaviors, increased risk of falls and dementia.
Taking care of hearing loss problems early makes working toward better hearing easier. Getting the hearing loss help you need early is important because the longer a person waits to treat hearing loss, the worse hearing loss can get. Sometimes damage can be permanent. And, if you’re doing something that hurts your ears without realizing it, the sooner you find out, the better.
Benefits of treating hearing loss
Treating hearing loss offers an array of benefits, especially for continued brain health:
Relationship & Communication Improvements
Utilizing our hearing abilities is one of the details that allows us to create healthy relationships. The ability to communicate what we need and want becomes second nature as we age. Now add in living with hearing loss that progressively gets worse. People with hearing loss will experience difficulties in communication, which can lead to a person withdrawing from activities and social events. This type of social isolation has been linked to an increased risk of dementia and other early onset cognitive disorders. Working with an Audiologist and Board-Certified Hearing Instrument Specialist allows a person with hearing loss to regain their confidence in their communication abilities. Healthy hearing supports positive brain health as we age.
Brain Health & Cognitive Abilities Improve
As we’ve discussed many times in our blog, researchers at Johns Hopkins University have issued results from a number of studies linking untreated hearing loss and dementia. Because our auditory processing occurs in the brain, (Yes, we hear with our brains), hearing loss impacts our cognitive brain function. As a result, untreated hearing loss produces impaired memories, difficulty with concentrations, the inability to complete short-term tasks and increased fatigue from working so hard to process sounds. Treating hearing loss with the use of hearing aids brings significant benefits to your cognitive abilities. Additional medical studies have shown that people who treated their hearing loss with hearing aids performed at the same level in cognitive tests as people with normal hearing. Treating hearing loss now will support better brain health as people age.
Better Quality of Life
The obvious benefit to working toward better hearing health is improving a person’s communication abilities, thus resulting in a better quality of life. But working toward better hearing loss offers so much more than just this. Researchers in recent years have found that “people who experienced hearing problems in different everyday situations moved less within their local area than those who considered their hearing to be good,” and that “the people who were hard of hearing were more than twice as likely as others to limit their movement to nearby areas.” According to researcher Hannele Polku of The University of Jyvaskyla and University of Tampere in Japan, “We observed that older people with hearing problems have more limited life space, and that these problems lower their quality of life.” Of course, when we are young and our hearing is healthy, we can take for granted our communication abilities and how this connects us to our lives. Treating hearing loss with the use of hearing aids improves our abilities in all aspects of our life.
Are you ready to treat your hearing loss?
At Physicians Hearing Solutions, all of our hearing healthcare professionals are fully licensed and trained in providing each patient with the best hearing healthcare options available. We want you to know you can trust that you are getting the highest quality hearing healthcare each time you come to see us. Our goal is to improve your quality of life through providing you with the quality hearing healthcare you deserve. We offer Free Hearing Screenings so please don’t wait, call today, (401) 921-0181 Warwick, Rhode Island office, (401) 435-5355 East Providence, Rhode Island office.