You’ve probably heard the expression, “ignorance is bliss”. While this may be true for a few, select things in life, it certainly doesn’t apply to your health. In fact, the more you ignore health changes or concerns, the more likely they are to cause further problems down the road.
Untreated hearing loss affects your health
According to Debbie Clason, staff writer for Healthy Hearing, there are at least 7 different reasons why being ignorant about your hearing health may be detrimental in other areas. Let’s take a look at them.
- Hearing loss and brain atrophy
This involves the “if you don’t use it, you lose it” philosophy. When you have hearing loss, the area of the brain that normally translates sounds into something meaningful is reassigned to other senses, such as sight or touch.
- Hearing loss connected with dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease
This area is still being investigated, but research as recent as 2017 has suggested a connection between brain atrophy and an increased risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Treating hearing loss may be one way to reduce the risk of acquiring these conditions.
- Increased fall risk
While hearing is usually considered the primary function of the ears, they also play an essential role in balance. The vestibular system relies on a properly functioning middle ear, along with other things, to facilitate body balance. Research has shown that the greater the hearing loss, the higher the risk of falls.
- Hearing loss and emotions
Along with the physical loss of hearing comes the emotional or psychological side effects. These include depression, anxiety, and paranoia, just to name a few. Between not being able to hear well, and having these emotional side effects, it’s no surprise that individuals with hearing loss often stay to themselves and retreat from social interactions that once brought them joy.
- Problems with relationships
The emotional side effects and social isolation mentioned above can have a negative effect on relationships, both with family members and with friends or co-workers. Experiencing hearing loss can be frustrating and can lead to difficulty in communicating effectively with others.
- Listening fatigue
When you injure a body part, the rest of your body suffers because it has to use other parts and systems in different ways to make up for the loss of function. The same is true with your hearing. When you can’t hear well, the brain has to work overtime to make sense of the surrounding environment, leaving you feeling fatigued.
- Reduced income
According to a study by the Better Hearing Institute, individuals with untreated hearing loss often earn less money than those who treat the problem with hearing aids, for example. The difference wasn’t small, either – on average, the pay rates were separated by $20,000!
Hearing testing and treatment
If the nagging of a family member hasn’t yet caused you to make an appointment with an audiologist, maybe one of the reasons mentioned above will. It’s time to get a hearing test and address your hearing health – stop procrastinating and get ready to hear well again!
Get the full story here: Seven Reasons To Stop Putting Off Hearing Health