The New Year always brings with it New Years’ resolutions, often with varying levels of success! If you’re looking for a resolution that will not only improve your lifestyle but is also easy to stick to, think about scheduling an annual hearing test as your newest New Years’ resolution for 2017. Not only is it an easy one to keep, but also you can renew your resolution each year!
Hearing specialists recommend that people aged 50 years and up schedule an annual hearing test. As hearing loss can occur gradually over time, it can be easy to overlook how much hearing loss may be affecting your life.
How common is hearing loss?
The prevalence of hearing loss may surprise you – 360 million people worldwide experience hearing loss, including approximately 20% of Americans. At age 65, that number increases to one in three! (hearingloss.org) That being said, of those people aged 70 and older who would benefit from hearing aids, fewer than one in three have ever used them.
In fact, it is well recognized that hearing loss is linked to aging, and the greatest amount of hearing loss occurs between the years of 60-69 (nidcd quick stats).
Nevertheless, people wait, on average, 10 years to get fitted for hearing devices from the time they receive their initial diagnosis (asha.org). In this gap of time, irreversible hearing loss can occur, which could be addressed and prevented.
Effects of untreated hearing loss on relationships with loved ones
It is incredibly important to promote hearing health, as there are considerable negative consequences to allowing hearing loss to continue untreated.
Treating hearing loss through the use of hearing devices has been shown to improve relationships. As untreated hearing loss can create tension around discussions with loved ones or in the workplace, the use of hearing aids can lead to better communication.
As such, a significant improvement in relationships with family members has been shown in recent studies of individuals who have chosen to tackle hearing loss with hearing instruments (hear-the-world.com).
Negative impacts of untreated hearing loss on workplace performance
In addition to the communication issues that can ensue from experiencing hearing loss in the workplace, which in turn can result in feelings of social isolation and anxiety (hear-it.org), untreated hearing loss can also have a negative impact on earnings.
While people with untreated hearing loss are more likely to be unemployed, those who are employed are more likely to earn less than their colleagues that do not experience hearing loss (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov).
Further studies have shown that the more severe the hearing loss, the higher disparity in earnings. Thankfully, the use of hearing devices can help lead to better communication. Studies also show that disclosing hearing loss – and giving people useful tips on how to accommodate it – can lead to greater levels of support from others.
Hearing loss and mental health
In fact, if you are over 50 years old and experience hearing loss, you are 2.5 times more likely to develop depression than other older persons without hearing loss (actionhearingloss.org).
One of the most important components of avoiding the negative effects of hearing loss is early identification and seeking rehabilitative support. The fitting of hearing instruments is generally a central tool in this process (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov).
New Year, New You: Schedule an annual hearing test in the New Year
Hearing loss is the third most common medical condition in the United States, so you shouldn’t feel worried about scheduling your free hearing test today. It is similar to a person who wears glasses getting their eyes checked once a year!
Whether you’re noticing increased difficulty in hearing people, either in a noisy or quiet environment, or you’re simply looking for an easy New Years’ resolution, don’t delay – contact our team of hearing instrument specialists.
We can guide you through the various options that may be available to you and we will consider your lifestyle in assessing the best approach, which is always tailored to your needs.
Gulf Gate Hearing Aids
To schedule a free hearing test, give us a call at 941-922-5894 or visit us at 2170 Gulf Gate Drive Sarasota, FL.