Do you often ask yourself “why do people keep telling me I need hearing aids when I can hear”? It’s highly likely you have hearing loss and you’re not alone. Hearing loss is not only a normal part of the aging process but is increasingly a problem for young people too.
But many people with mild hearing loss refuse to get hearing aids and just live with the difficulties. In fact, researchers estimate that some 86% of Americans over the age of 50 with hearing loss do not wear hearing aids.
There are lots of reasons why people say, “I can hear hear—why do I need hearing aids?” These reasons may include:
- Blissful lack of awareness
- Denial, fear or vanity
- Fears about cost
But refusing to get your hearing tested or doing anything about your hearing loss can have a significant and very costly impact on your life. Let’s take a look at why you might be reluctant to get hearing aids.
I don’t have a hearing problem
Because most hearing loss is gradual you may not even be aware of the problem. That’s because the brain is highly skilful at adapting so you don’t notice the changes. And you may find that facing the reality of your hearing problem can be challenging too and you may want to deny that reality.
But finding a solution for your hearing problems involves a real grieving process. And it starts with overcoming that stage of denial. And there are other reasons why you may not want to acknowledge your hearing problem. You may feel that you have much more pressing problems such as other health issues, financial problems or personal/ relationship challenges.
And believe it or not, sometimes your hearing loss can provide a level of protection and comfort. It can be easier to retreat into your silent world rather than deal with the misbehaving children, the arguments with your partner or whatever it might be.
You may refuse to accept your hearing loss because you think it shows weakness or you worry about how hearing aids will affect your image. But the research indicates that refusing to get your hearing tested may expose you to two or even three times the risk of developing dementia.
You may be aware that you have a hearing problem but it may actually be family members who cannot accept there is an issue. It may be part of their unwillingness to acknowledge the changes in you as you age or it may be that there isn’t room in their busy lives to deal with this problem right now. Even your doctor may not point out your hearing problem or may simply brush it aside as a normal part of aging.
It can be very costly if you continue to deny your hearing problem. Untreated hearing loss may cost you in many ways including:
- Health—physical and mental
- Loss of enjoyment
- Social withdrawal
- Financial, loss of income
If you think you may have a hearing problem then it is important to have your hearing tested. It’s possible that your communication challenges have a medical cause and you may be able to treat it with medicines or an operation. But a hearing test will identify any issues with your hearing.
I can hear; I just don’t understand
A large majority of people over the age of 60 experience a degree of hearing loss but most of these people will still retain some or even a good deal of hearing ability. The problem is that this type of gradual hearing loss typically affects the high frequencies first.
The parts of speech such as consonants that enable us to distinguish one English word from another sit in this same high frequency range. Such mild hearing loss can mean you no longer hear the difference between words such as ‘cat’ and ‘hat’ or ‘show’ and ‘know’.
It’s these little hearing mishaps that mean you frequently ask people to repeat themselves. It’s not that you can’t hear at all; rather the brain is mixing up the signals it’s getting from your ears. The brain is doing the best it can to interpret the sounds but it makes some mistakes along the way.
It’s all too easy in such situations to blame the speaker for mumbling, background noise such as the TV or distance from the speaker. And so most people prefer to try and ignore the problem rather than get their hearing tested and find a solution.
That’s why people wait an average of 7 years from when they first notice a hearing problem to when they finally get hearing aids. But your hearing is probably only getting worse while you procrastinate. There are steps you can take to make life and conversation easier. So don’t put it off; talk to a friendly House of Hearing expert.
The money question
Some people put off getting hearing aids because they believe the myth that modern aids are unaffordable. Actually, the major hearing aid manufacturers offer hearing aids for a wide variety of budgets.
House of Hearing offer:
- Hearing Aids as low as $58/month
- 0% Interest Financing
- Long Term Financing up to 36 months
You can also take advantage of our best value guarantee to get the lowest price for any identical brand and model hearing aid compared with the advertised price from any authorised dispenser in Ontario.
It’s time to acknowledge your hearing problem. We offer full hearing test facilities including ABR testing for young children and others who cannot speak for themselves. Come and experience our friendly service.