Don’t Turn That Hearing Aid Off if You’re Looking for Happiness!

A happy male, wearing hearing aids, sitting with a female for coffee. Focus is on the hearing aid.

As we get older, we all recognize that hearing loss and specific mental health challenges can get worse in spite of a healthy, active lifestyle. And a strong link between the two has been recognized by scientists which should never be overlooked. So don’t turn off that hearing aid.

Individuals with neglected hearing loss are twice as likely to cope with depression. Close to 27% more people with untreated hearing loss reported “often feeling sad” compared to those who used a hearing aid.

They were also 24% more likely to quit doing things they once loved and 39% more likely to feel as if people are mad at them for no reason.

There’s an even more troubling statistic you should know about, though you won’t really like it. Keep that hearing aid turned on!

Our beliefs about hearing loss will be entirely altered by this study

Age-related hearing loss has been considered a harmless condition for centuries. It was thought that the other senses would merely compensate. People would just go on with their lives attempting to live safely, healthily, and happily. Apart from hearing impairment, it was thought that loss of hearing had no other adverse health effects.

Now we know better. This study demonstrates just one of the greater effects that hearing loss has on a person’s overall health.

As a society, we will need to rethink hearing loss based on this well-structured and significant study.

How was this study done?

Over 2000 people 50 or older were surveyed in this research conducted by dedicated researchers at the National Institute for Aging (NCOA). The participants included a combination of hearing aid wearers and those with untreated hearing loss. Clinically relevant questions were asked to establish the levels of the following:

  • Isolation
  • Depression
  • Paranoia
  • Anxiety

The study took a ground-breaking step by introducing more than 2000 family members of the study participants. They did this to help corroborate what the participants were self-reporting. With this additional verification, this study becomes even more pertinent when we talk about the effects of hearing loss.

How health and quality of life are affected by depression

Eating disorders such as severe obesity or significant weight loss are more likely in those who suffer from depression, according to the American Psychological Association. Memory loss and insomnia are also more prevalent in those with untreated hearing loss.

While driving, cooking, and other activities, their diminished reaction time can result in severe injury. Those who suffer with depression have even been found to heal more slowly, causing complications and lengthy hospital stays.

The danger of falls for older people is also increased when an individual has depression.

Depression worsens as hearing loss progresses. The individual usually becomes more and more isolated, lonely, and unable to care for him or herself.

But there’s an even sadder statistic.

Usage rates of hearing aids

About 75% of people who should use hearing aids don’t use them. Yup! For many, this increased rate of depression and all of its adverse effects are entirely unnecessary and avoidable, yet they are not taking measures to prevent it.

Why do so many people avoid using a hearing aid?

When asked why they don’t use a hearing aid, many individuals say they own one. They simply won’t wear it because it makes them “look old.” It makes them embarrassed.

These people would benefit from a hearing aid update. Modern hearing aids work better, and they are also more unobtrusive and let people sync with devices. This makes them seem more like an extension of your smart tech and less like a hearing aid.

Price is also a problem for a smaller yet substantial number of people. States and insurance companies are now recognizing the connection between untreated hearing loss and total health. They are helping to make hearing aids more affordable and accessible. In addition, individuals who object to the cost of hearing aids also don’t understand how much-untreated hearing loss can cost them over time. They’re not aware of how hearing loss will impact their health and quality of life. In only a few years, your total health cost can go up by as much as 40% because of untreated hearing loss.

What can be done to reduce hearing-related depression symptoms?

Wear your hearing aid with pride. Help fight the stigma people feel about using a hearing aid by showing them how much better you feel when you can hear.

Maximize your hearing in every setting with your modern hearing aid by taking some time to learn the advanced features. You’re not getting the most from your hearing aid by simply cranking up the volume. Consult us so you can demo these upgraded hearing aids.

If you feel you aren’t getting the most out of your hearing aid and are tempted to not use it, talk to us today about how to make use of your hearing aid more effectively.


The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.


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