How Treating Hearing Loss Improves Your Relationships

Dr. Kevin H. Ivory, Au.D., CCC-AHearing Loss

Dr. Kevin H. Ivory, Au.D., CCC-A

Dr. Kevin Ivory, Au.D., CCC-A received his Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He then went on to earn his Doctor of Audiology degree from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, one of the top 10 audiology residential programs in the country. Dr. Ivory cultivated his clinical excellence through mentorship from some of the top audiologists in Chicago, in a variety of clinical settings, including busy private practices, Rush University Medical Center, Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital, Edward Hines, Jr. Veterans Administration Hospital, and Advocate Hope Children’s Hospital.
Dr. Kevin H. Ivory, Au.D., CCC-A

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If your having trouble with hearing loss, you’re not alone. According to the Center for Hearing and Communication, over 48 million people in the U.S. have hearing loss. The incidence of hearing loss increases with age with approximately one third of Americans between ages 65 and 74 and nearly half of those over age 75 suffering from hearing loss. Studies show hearing loss is the third most prevalent chronic health condition facing older adults. Unfortunately, only 20% of those individuals who might benefit from treatment actually seek help.

 

Often, people tend to delay treatment until they cannot communicate even in the quietest of hearing situations. On average, hearing aid users wait over 10 years after their initial diagnosis to be fit with their first set of hearing aids. Many admit to feeling embarrassed or in denial when it comes to admitting that they are afflicted by hearing loss. If you have begun to suspect that you may have hearing loss it imperative that you seek treatment. Untreated hearing loss can have a wide range of consequences for your health and quality of life.  Most importantly hearing loss has a detrimental impact on your most important relationships.

 

How hearing loss effects your relationships

Untreated hearing loss does not only affect an individual’s quality of life – it also has an impact on relationships, especially for those closest. This is because hearing loss affects one’s ability to communicate, and by definition, communication involves at least one other person.

A 2009 British study revealed that out of 1,500 people with hearing loss surveyed, 44 percent reported that their hearing loss had damaged relationships with others. 34 percent reported that the breakdown in communication had actually destroyed marriages and other important relationships.

Daily communication among couples is a corner stone of a healthy relationship. Missing small details, feelings misconstrued as being ignored and other misunderstandings can cause huge riffs in your relationships. Frustration creeps in, which can lead to resentment, leading to further breakdown in communication and intimacy. This can result in a sense of loneliness and isolation for both partners.

 

Hearing loss and isolation

Many individuals with hearing loss experience social isolation, whether they realize it or not. It might begin with avoiding large parties or gatherings and trickle down to canceling on smaller, intimate affairs. For those with hearing loss, large groups, noisy venues and dark environments can make it even more difficult to hear, engage in conversation and contribute to social situations. When we have hearing loss, it can make interacting with friends, especially groups of friends very challenging . It’s common for people with hearing loss to feel exhausted after social engagements. If their hearing loss remains untreated it can cause them to isolate themselves from the people who bring them the most joy.

 

Hearing loss and depression

Untreated hearing loss can affect an individual’s daily life and lead to depression, a serious mental health issue affecting 15 million American adults.  Not being able to communicate with friends and in relationships at work can make individuals suffering from hearing loss feel inadequate and ultimately isolated. According to a study by the National Council on Aging, people 50 and older with untreated hearing loss were more likely to report depression, anxiety, anger, frustration, emotional instability and paranoia than those who sought hearing solutions.

While dealing with hearing loss can be challenging, there are many hearing loss solutions available that can improve relationships and, ultimately, your level of happiness and satisfaction with life.

Improve your relationships

Treating your hearing loss with hearing aids can improve your communication skills with loved ones.

Hearing loss affects not only the person with hearing loss, but also everyone around them.  Studies show that interventions such as hearing aids can not only improve quality of life, but can improve relationship satisfaction, communication and social functioning. From having intimate conversations with their partners to enjoying TV together or socializing, people who invest in hearing aids find that they are once again able to reengage and enjoy life more fully.

Consider your important relationships. Has communication suffered with those you love? If so, don’t delay any longer and contact Glendora Hearing today to schedule a hearing test today.