This Valentine’s Day, Show Your Love in This Unexpected Way

Woman and man cuddling on a park bench after getting hearing aids to improve their relationship.

Want to show how much you care? Listen to your loved ones, truly listen. But you need to be able to hear in order to really listen.

Studies reveal millions of people would benefit from wearing hearing aids because one in three adults between the ages of 65 and 74 have some level of hearing loss. But only 30% of those individuals actually wear hearing aids, unfortunately.

Neglecting your hearing loss leads to trouble hearing, along with higher dementia rates, depression, and strained relationships. Suffering in silence is how many people endure their hearing loss.

But spring is almost here. It’s a time for new foliage, flowers, new beginnings, and growing together. Talking candidly about hearing loss can be a good way to renew relationships.

It’s Important to Have “The Talk”

Studies have revealed that an person with untreated hearing loss is 2.4 times more likely to experience dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. When the part of your brain responsible for hearing becomes less active, it can start a cascade effect that can impact your entire brain. Doctors refer to this as brain atrophy. It’s the “use it or lose it” principle in action.

Depression cases amongst people with hearing loss are almost double that of an individual with normal hearing. People who have deteriorating hearing loss, according to research, often experience anxiety and agitation. Separation from family and friends is often the consequence. They’re likely to fall deeper into depression as they stop participating in activities once loved.

Strained relationships between friends and family members is often the result of this isolation.

Solving The Mystery

Your loved one may not think they can talk to you about their hearing problems. Fear or shame might be an issue for them. They could be in denial. In order to determine when will be the appropriate time to have this discussion, some detective work may be necessary.

Since you can’t hear what your loved one hears, you’ll have to use outward cues, such as:

  • essential sounds, like somebody calling their name, a doorbell, or a warning alarm are frequently missed
  • Avoiding conversations
  • Staying away from busy places
  • Frequent misunderstandings
  • Sudden difficulty with work, hobbies, or school
  • Ringing, buzzing, and other noises that no one else hears
  • Turning the volume way up on the TV
  • Agitation or anxiousness in social situations that you haven’t previously seen

Watch for for these common symptoms and plan on having a heart-to-heart talk with your loved one.

How to Talk About Hearing Loss

It might be hard to have this conversation. A spouse in denial might brush it off or become defensive. That’s why it’s essential to approach hearing loss properly. You might need to modify your language based on your unique relationship, but the steps will be the same for the most part.

Step 1: Tell them you love them unconditionally and appreciate your relationship.

Step 2: You are concerned about their health. You’ve gone over the studies. You’re aware of the higher dementia risk and depression that accompany neglected hearing loss. You don’t want your loved one to go through that.

Step 3: You’re also concerned about your own health and safety. Your hearing can be damaged by overly loud volumes on the TV and other devices. Additionally, studies show that elevated noise can lead to anxiety, which might effect your relationship. If someone has broken into your home, or you yell for help, your loved one might not hear you.

People engage with others through emotion. If you can paint an emotional picture of what might happen, it’s more impactful than simply listing facts.

Step 4: Come to an agreement that it’s time for a hearing test. Do it right away after deciding. Don’t wait.

Step 5: Be ready for objections. These could occur anytime during the process. This is someone you know well. What obstacles will they find? Costs? Time? Are they convinced it’s no big deal? Are they thinking about trying out home remedies? You understand “natural hearing loss cures” don’t actually work and could cause more harm than good.

Be prepared with your answers. You might even practice them in the mirror. You should address your loved one’s concerns but you don’t need to use this exact plan word-for-word.

Grow Your Relationship

If your significant other is reluctant to talk, it can be a tough situation. But by having this talk, you’ll grow closer and get your loved one the help they need to live a longer, healthier, more fulfilling life. Isn’t love all about growing closer?


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.