If you think ignoring your hearing loss is harmless, think again. Hearing loss has been linked to various diseases such as heart disease and diabetes, and can actually contribute to mental and emotional illnesses. According to a 2017 study by the National Institution of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), more than 11% of people with hearing loss also suffered from depression. This study, along with others on the subject, proved to audiologists that their suspicions on the connection between hearing loss and depression were valid.
Depression and similar mental health problems, like anxiety and paranoia, in hearing loss patients usually stems from social challenges. For instance, communicating with loved ones or in the workplace can be difficult for those who are hearing impaired, creating communication barriers. These barriers can cause emotional distress, lack of confidence, and feelings of sadness, which in turn can lead to social isolation. The likelihood of this occurrence is increased when the hearing loss is more severe or goes untreated.
Fortunately, hearing impairment can be prevented from contributing to negative social and emotional consequences. In fact, with hearing loss treatment such as hearing aids, quality of life can be maintained, or even improved. According to a survey of hearing aid users vs non-users by the National Council on the Aging (NCOA), 56% of hearing aid users reported improvement in relations at home compared to non-users, 50% reported improvement in feelings about self, and 48% reported improvement in life overall.
While hearing loss is not reversible, you can get your life back with treatment. If you are in the South Florida area and are experiencing symptoms of hearing loss or have questions about hearing loss, contact New Generation Hearing Centers today. Schedule your FREE consultation to let our experts find you the hearing loss solution that fits your lifestyle.