A study was published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, and it was found that untreated hearing loss can lead to a wide variety of other medical conditions, including depression and dementia.
Those with untreated hearing loss can possibly fall victim to more accidents than those without hearing loss. Being able to hear is a protective sense that enables us to be aware of our surroundings without looking directly at the threat. For example, if you can’t hear well you may not have the critical warning system that alerts you of an oncoming car behind you on the street or a biker in the park. Accidents can cause even more medical and health problems down the line.
Untreated hearing loss can lead to social isolation and depression. Productivity, work, and socializing can be affected by hearing loss and therefore have an adverse effect on one’s self-esteem; this can lead to isolation, loneliness, and depression. This depression and isolation can also lead to cognitive decline and dementia.
Dementia can be caused by hearing loss due to something researchers call “cognitive load.” If you are constantly trying to process what you are or rather are not hearing your brain cannot focus resources on encoding what you hear into your memory. It is possible that years of drawing resources away from brain functions such as working memory will eventually reduce the brain’s resilience leading to cognitive decline and dementia.
There are steps you can take to treat your hearing loss and have an excellent quality of life:
- Admit your hearing loss and see a specialist as soon as possible.
- Don’t isolate yourself. Find support groups for people who suffer from hearing loss.
- Talk to family and friends about your hearing loss and tell them that you may have a hard time hearing conversation over the phone and in crowded areas. The more you disclose your situation, the more people will accommodate you, and you won’t need to feel embarrassed.
- If you are working, disclose your hearing loss to your line manager and HR.
- Go for regular check-ups with your hearing specialist.
- Take proper care of your hearing aid to ensure the best quality sound
- Avoid accidents and injuries by being careful and alert in busy streets and public areas.
- Don’t let go of your social circle or hobbies because of hearing loss.
- Consult with the Hearing Experts at Kenwood Hearing Center
- Remember hearing loss does not just affect your ears but can have an impact on your whole being, physically and mentally, in ways you may not think about.
If you have questions about hearing loss or hearing aids? We are here to help! Please contact us today and schedule an appointment at one of our convenient Ohio hearing center locations: Bowling Green, Toledo, or Wauseon. The experts at Kenwood Hearing Center are here for you to help you with not only hearing loss but your overall hearing health