It’s not unusual to experience resistance towards getting hearing aids, or even towards the thought that you just might need them. Losing the sense of hearing often occurs over a long period of time, decades even, and the gradual nature of the loss can leave us unaware of just how much we’re no longer hearing anymore.
In fact, most people who do go in for a hearing aid evaluation do so after someone close to them, typically a spouse or coworker, suggests that they should. Although, it usually takes quite a while before those urges actually translate into action. In fact, surveys show that most people wait an average of 7 years from the time they’re first told they have hearing loss to the time they actually get hearing aids. This is understandable when considering the fact that we often don’t even realize what we’re missing.
This form of denial can be persistent, especially when faced with the hurdles that getting hearing aids can present. Namely, the time and cost associated with acquiring them, and the initial discomfort users report as they gradually get used to their hearing aids.
And then, of course, there’s the stigma around hearing aids themselves. Despite the fact that hearing aids are really no different than glasses or any other physical aid, they have become culturally synonymous with old age. Our modern aversion to growing old, and all of the ideas of limitation that come with it, is likely the source of our similar aversion to hearing aids themselves. This sentiment definitely deserves some reevaluation, however, as hearing aids are remarkable feats of technology and have come a long way with their modern design and sleekness.
If you’re experiencing this common resistance to getting evaluated for hearing aids, or if someone close to you is going through this, consider these compelling reasons to give it a second thought:
It’s Easier Earlier
That’s right, it’s a well-known fact that the earlier you seek help for any hearing problems (even if you’re still not totally convinced that you have hearing problems), the easier it is for your brain to properly adjust to hearing aids. This is because our brain literally forgets the sounds that it stops hearing. The nerve impulses for forgotten sounds have to be re-acquired when hearing aids bring back those frequencies and the sooner they’re brought back in with hearing aids, the more likely the brain will be able to adjust and actually process those sounds correctly. When people wait a long time to get hearing help, these long-lost sounds “feel funny” to them because the brain is not processing them in a familiar way. Sadly, due to this initial strangeness, those who procrastinate getting their hearing checked out are more likely to give up during this longer-than-usual acclimation phase.
Life Gets Better
While it’s easy to see how things would naturally improve when your ability to hear improves, sometimes it becomes easy to simply accept where things are and deny the decline in our quality of life. The Better Hearing Institute set out to surpass these subjectivities and actually document the improvements that those with hearing aids are experiencing. Users not only reported an overall better quality of life, but they also reported noticeable improvements in their cognitive abilities, especially memory.
They Protect You
Multiple studies have now linked hearing loss to dementia and memory loss, presenting brain health as one of the most important reasons to pursue hearing help. While it’s unfortunate to learn that hearing loss, which is hard enough on its own, is a possible contributing factor of dementia, it is encouraging to learn that an early and aggressive approach to treating hearing loss could actually help protect the brain from cognitive decline. Some recent studies looking into this relationship have found that treating the hearing loss can actually help reverse cognitive impairments even after they’ve begun.
One of the more immediate benefits of getting hearing aids is the ability to have in depth conversations with those we love, without the frustrating back and forth of trying to figure out what’s been said. Hearing aid users often remark at how they didn’t even realize how much they missed the voices of their friends and family.
Getting hearing aids doesn’t have to be difficult and often turns out to be a decision people wished they’d made earlier. Contact us today to find out just how easy it is.