Being able to communicate is essential for forming and maintaining relationships. Studies have shown that people with untreated hearing loss can have serious emotional and social consequences that can lead to isolation, depression, and anxiety.
Having an untreated hearing loss severely limits the ability for people to connect. Not being able to hear what someone is saying and asking people to repeat themselves multiple times can be embarrassing and frustrating. This can lead to the person with the hearing loss to become withdrawn and avoid social situations altogether.
For the people without hearing loss trying to connect with the ones that do, they can misinterpret the hearing loss as a lack of interest or care. They may also become frustrated and may lack patience for trying to accommodate those with the hearing loss.
Both situations are very damaging to relationships and can negatively affect the mental health and wellbeing of individuals and families.
Having a conversation about treatment and testing for a hearing loss could be difficult, especially in older adults who are more likely to deny they may be hearing impaired. Discussing the benefits of treatment and the advancements in hearing aid technology may make that conversation easier. Showing care and concern for their wellbeing is also more beneficial than telling that person they “need a hearing aid”. Telling them what to do may cause them to withdraw further and deny it for fear of seeming “old”.
Receiving treatment for a hearing loss can significantly improve quality of life. If you or a loved one is noticing a potential hearing loss, please book a hearing test.
To read more about this topic, click on the links below:
Untreated Hearing Loss Linked to Depression, Social Isolation in Seniors
Hearing Loss as a Social Problem: A Study of Hearing-impaired Spouses and Their Hearing Partners