Hearing Aids can help decrease the negative effects of the common condition of hearing loss. However, a lot of hearing loss goes undiscovered and neglected – and that can result in greater depression rates and feelings of solitude in people who suffer from hearing loss.
It can also lead to a strain in work and personal relationships, which itself contributes to more feelings of isolation and depression. This is a difficulty that doesn’t have to happen, and getting that hearing loss treated is the best way to end the downward spiral.
Research Connects Depression to Hearing Loss
Researchers have discovered in several studies that untreated hearing loss is linked to the development of depressive symptoms – and this isn’t a new trend. Symptoms of depression, anxiety, and paranoia were, as reported by one study, more likely to impact people over the age of 50 who have neglected hearing loss. They were also more likely to avoid social experiences. Many said that they felt as if people were getting angry at them for no apparent reason. However, those who used hearing aids reported improvements in their relationships, and the people around them – family, co-workers, and friends – also observed improvements.
Another study found that people between the ages of 18 and 70, revealed a more acute feeling of depression if they suffered from hearing loss of more than 25 decibels. The only group that didn’t document a higher occurrence of depression even with hearing loss was people 70 years old or older. But that still means that a large part of the population is not getting the help they require to better their lives. And people who took part in a different study revealed that those participants who treated their hearing loss using hearing aids had a lower depression rate.
Mental Health is Affected by Resistance to Using Hearing Aids
It would seem obvious that with these kinds of outcomes people would want to seek out help with their hearing loss. But people don’t find help for two principal reasons. Some people assume that their hearing is working just fine when it really isn’t. They have themselves convinced that others are mumbling or even that they are speaking quietly on purpose. The other factor is that some people might not realize they have a hearing loss. To them, it seems as if others don’t want to talk to them.
It’s vital that anyone who has experienced symptoms of anxiety or depression, or the feeling that they are being left out of interactions because they are talking too quietly or mumbling too much, get their hearing checked. If there is hearing loss, that person needs to discuss which hearing aid is right for them. You could possibly feel a lot better if you consult a hearing specialist.