Where you will always see a Doctor of Audiology

Age-related Hearing Loss Is Often Untreated

an older gentleman who is hard of hearing

Age-related hearing loss is a feature of getting older. As the body’s systems age, they become less effective. Even though most people learn to deal with the changes, it doesn’t change the fact that an estimated 33% of Americans between the ages of 65 and 74 experience hearing loss.

Unfortunately, people can get too comfortable with hearing atrophy. Studies show that around 12% of men and women with a formal hearing loss diagnosis by a certified audiologist fail to invest in a hearing device. Yes, age-related hearing loss is often untreated, particularly among the older generations. 

If you want to learn more about the reasons why this happens, read on.

Why is age-related hearing loss left untreated?

The problems for elderly people can range from the scientific to the anecdotal. These are the most significant reasons why people choose not to treat hearing loss.

Feelings of embarrassment

For many people, a hearing aid carries a stigma as it signifies getting older, which can be hard to admit. Therefore, eligible hearing device wearers continue to dismiss aids as it proves their hearing is still sharp.

How manufacturers help: The good news is that manufacturers understand these concerns. To fix them, they have created hearing devices that are super-small and inconspicuous. As a result, it’s often hard to tell if a person is dealing with hearing loss.

A lack of awareness

Although many people understand how hearing aids can impact their lives, not everyone is aware of the effects. This is because older generations are less tech-savvy, and might not keep up to date with the latest releases. Also, it’s hard to judge hearing atrophy if you don’t have a solid reference point.

How you can help: The key is to schedule regular hearing appointments with an audiologist. That way, you can rely on an expert to evaluate your hearing capacity and offer essential advice on how to make it better.

Can you relate to any of the above?

Why is it imperative to treat hearing loss?

If you have experienced hearing loss for a long time, you might not see the problem. The body is incredibly adaptive, and it will evolve to prevent ailments from becoming too problematic. However, the technology available means you don’t have to deal with a loss of senses, particularly hearing. 

Not only are treatments available to alleviate symptoms, but a lack of action can have serious side effects, which include:

  • Loneliness: Every decibel drop in people under the age of 70 makes you 7% more likely to be lonely. Hearing loss is bad for your social life because it can make you uncomfortable in social situations. For example, men and women are reclusive when they realize they can’t follow conversations since they don’t want to be a hindrance. 
  • Degrees of hearing loss: Not all hearing loss is easy to diagnose as it can appear insignificant. Still, the side-effects are powerful, so even a small level of atrophy is powerful.
  • Risk of dementia: There is a link between people who have hearing loss and dementia. People with hearing problems are more likely to experience mental health issues because of the effects poor hearing has on the brain and nervous system. Therefore, not investing in a hearing device could lead to problems in later life. 
  • Escalation: Tinnitus, for example, encourages those who experience it to drown out the sound. However, this tactic only leads to an escalation of hearing loss, which is not a smart move.

When you spot the signs, you should treat them immediately to prevent these side-effects.

What are the symptoms?

These are the most common symptoms of hearing loss:

  • Overly loud sounds
  • Difficulty hearing in noisy or loud areas
  • Difficulty understand certain sounds, such “s” and “th”
  • Tinnitus
  • Regular turning up the volume on electronic devices
  • Inability to understand conversations in-person or over the telephone

Better hearing is a phone call away

The Quality Hearing & Audiology Center is here to assist you through this challenging period. By calling 816-233-0022, you can speak to a knowledgeable advisor who will book you an appointment with a qualified and certified audiologist. We can diagnose your hearing loss and recommend the proper treatment for your specific lifestyle, hearing loss and budget preferences.