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

Inability to hear is not the only effect of hearing loss, it can also have a powerful impact on your overall life. Relationships can be strained and daily pursuits can be interrupted by loss of hearing.

A study conducted by AARP found that untreated hearing loss had a more significant impact on quality of life than:

  • Stroke
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity

The loss of hearing, when left untreated, can definitely get in the way of your lifestyle, nevertheless, there are many who don’t get help. A perceived stigma attached to hearing loss is one reason why people who suffer from hearing loss don’t get the help they need, say researchers. People are scared they will be treated differently if people learn they are dealing with hearing loss. It doesn’t matter how old they are, this perception can distort the way they see themselves.

Many Others Also Have Hearing Loss

As lifespans grow longer, hearing loss has become more commonplace, in spite of the fact that it can impact people of any age, The World Health Organization reports that over 1.1 billion people are at risk of hearing loss and the perceptions that come along with it, many of them young adults. Hearing loss is, in fact, one of a young adult’s most significant health threats. Persistent resistance to getting help continues even as the number of people with hearing loss grows. How is one’s overall health affected?

What is The Perception of Hearing Loss?

By definition, stigma means a brand that marks someone as inferior and that pretty much says it all. A lot of people who suffer from hearing loss are concerned they will seem older than they are, less healthy, or less capable.

Historically, there is some basis for this worry. A 2010 study revealed people were not as well accepted when they suffered from hearing loss. But that study is based on data almost a decade old. As hearing loss becomes more widespread, this perception is changing. Hearing loss technology is becoming Stylish, fun, and cutting edge. Even celebrities are openly wearing hearing aids. Research shows that some other age related health concerns, such as dementia, could 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?

It is simple to say that perception doesn’t matter, but if this fear is keeping you from seeking help, recognize that there are health repercussions for not getting treatment. People get colonoscopies, according to an AARP study, more often than they get hearing tests. Not having a hearing exam because you refuse to recognize your hearing loss will impact your health as you get older.

Untreated Hearing Loss, What Are The Consequences?

These physical consequences of not dealing with your hearing loss will affect your general health;

Fatigue

Struggling to hear makes just about everything in life more challenging. Just attempting to hear conversations and everyday sounds is a difficult task. You also have to be extra careful to protect your safety because you can’t hear alert sounds or cars coming. Just working hard to hear common sounds can cause chronic fatigue.

Common Headaches and Migraines

You can get headaches and migraines if you have too much fear and tension. You might not recognize there is a connection, but studies have revealed a link between migraines and certain types of hearing loss. Even if you don’t normally get migraines, your brain has to make up for the sounds you can’t hear, and that constant struggle can make your head hurt.

Mental Health

You might also be facing mental health concerns as a result of your untreated hearing loss like depression and social anxiety. Social isolation is increased by hearing loss and it can also result in dementia. Moodiness and reduced energy levels go hand-in-hand with these other challenges.

The Negative Perception of Hearing Loss Can be Surmounted

Taking the first step and seek out help if you want to conquer these negative perceptions. Hearing loss is a treatable condition. If you decide not to get treatment, you should recognize that you are the one who suffers.

You also might be stressing for no reason because not all hearing loss is permanent. You can’t be sure what the issue is unless you make an appointment to get a hearing exam. It could be as simple as earwax buildup.

Acknowledging you have hearing loss is not enough, it’s important to do something about it. Nowadays you can get hearing aids in many shapes and sizes. There are hearing aids that are less noticeable if your worried about people learning you have hearing loss.

You can prove everyone wrong if you deal with your hearing loss in the right way. You can be just as active and healthy as everyone else, so wear your hearing aids with self-confidence. Your attitude will change people’s perception not only of you, but of everyone who has hearing loss. Increase awareness and keep healthy by not surrendering to negative perceptions.

You don’t have to be less able if you have hearing loss, because it’s actually a medical condition. Get your hearing tested today.

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