The new year is a wonderful invitation to recommit to your health and wellness. A great way you can do this is prioritize your hearing which is often an under-recognized aspect of overall health. Hearing is a critical sense that we use to navigate everyday life. But nearly 1 in 6 people live with some degree of impaired hearing, impacting over 48 million people. Though hearing loss is pervasive, only a third of people who could benefit from treatment actually receive it. Untreated symptoms can strain communication and relationships, increase health risks, and affect work life. There are effective ways hearing loss is treated that transform hearing and health in significant ways. Being proactive about your hearing health is as simple as scheduling an appointment for a hearing test.
What is Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss is the third most common chronic medical condition that people live with today. It can be caused by several factors including: exposure to loud noise, aging, existing medical conditions, head injuries, and chronic ear infections. These factors can damage sensory cells in the inner ear that are critical to how sound is absorbed and processed. Resource cells in the cochlea convert incoming sound waves into electrical signals which get carried to the brian. The brain is then able to continue processing these signals, including assigning meaning to them which is how we understand what we hear. Damaged sensory cells result in the brain receiving less auditory information which causes hearing loss.
Hearing loss produces a range of symptoms that make it tough to hear. These symptoms – tinnitus (a ringing or buzzing noise in the ears), distortion of sounds, difficulty hearing when there is background noise etc. – can be mild to severe depending on the degree of hearing loss present. This makes it hard to participate in conversations and social activities so it is common for people to avoid this as much as possible. Social withdrawal and strained relationships are major effects of untreated hearing loss. Untreated symptoms can also increase a number of health risks including cognitive decline, falls, and depressive symptoms. This highlights the importance of protecting your hearing health and addressing symptoms early.
Benefits of Treating Hearing Loss
Fortunately, effective hearing loss treatment is accessible and painless. Treating hearing loss offers countless life changing benefits that support people living active and full lives. Key benefits include the following:
- Strengthens communication: treatment provides ample support for the ears and brain, making it easier to hear. This alleviates symptoms and maximizes one’s hearing capacities which allows people to better participate in conversations. People are more able to readily hear, respond, and engage with others which strengthens communication.
- Improves relationships: communication is foundational for relationships. People often report feeling unheard or ignored by their loved one with hearing loss. This leads to frustration, distance, and strain in relationships. Treatment addresses this by transforming hearing and enabling people to engage in conversations much more easily. The support treatment allows people to spend quality time, engage in everyday activities with ease, and have conversations unrestricted by symposium. This supports connection, intimacy, and closeness which improves relationships.
- Enriches social life: strengthened communication also supports social engagement. With increased capacity to hear and communicate, people are more able to navigate social settings and participate in social activities. Treatment allows people to fully engage in social life with greater presence.
- Boosts overall health: extensive research shows that untreated hearing loss increases health risks. Treatment alleviates these risks by supporting brain health and strengthening cognitive functions, increasing spatial awareness and safety, as well as transforming mental health by improving relationships and social engagement. These benefits boost overall health, happiness, and wellness.
These benefits profoundly improve quality of life. Treating hearing loss supports people living active lives with thriving relationships.
Prioritizing Hearing Health in the New Year
You can prioritize your hearing health with one small step: scheduling an appointment for a hearing test. Having your hearing comprehensively evaluated is the first step towards treatment. This involves a painless and noninvasive process that identifies your hearing needs. Your hearing healthcare provider is then able to tailor treatment to meet your specific needs. The new year offers a fresh start and an opportune time to commit to your health. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a hearing test. We look forward to seeing you in the new year!