You can wind up in the hospital if you don’t correctly manage your hearing loss symptoms. I know that sounds like an exaggeration. We’re used to thinking of hearing loss as not much more than an inconvenience – something that makes the news a bit more difficult to hear or, at worst, makes you unwittingly agree to something you didn’t mean.
But new research is causing alarm over the long-term health impacts of neglected hearing loss.
What Does Hearing Loss Have to do With Your Health?
At first glance, hearing loss doesn’t appear to have that much to do with other health indicators. But research conducted by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health reveals that over time, visits to the hospital can increase by as much as 50% for somebody with neglected hearing loss. The possibility of serious health issues goes up the longer hearing loss goes untreated.
That’s a puzzling finding: what does hearing have to do with your overall health? The answer is complicated.
Hearing Health And Mental Health
Untreated hearing loss has been linked to several other health issues, including:
- You begin to lose your memory. In fact, your odds of developing dementia is twice as high with untreated hearing loss.
- Balance problems. Hearing loss can make it harder to keep your balance and maintain situational awareness.
- An increase in anxiety and depression. Simply stated, untreated hearing loss can increase depression and anxiety, which will then have a powerfully negative effect on your physical body, not to mention your mental health.
Hearing Aids Really Help
It’s not all gloom and doom, though. Far from it. The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School research suggests that up to 75% of hearing loss associated cognitive decline can be halted by one basic solution: wearing a hearing aid.
The health risks linked to hearing loss can be significantly reduced by using hearing aids. According to the research, individuals who used hearing aids for only two weeks saw:
- Reductions in severe brain injuries.
- Balance and awareness improvements.
- Brain function improvements.
Over a period of around two decades, Johns Hopkins accumulated and analyzed data from more than 77,000 individuals. And a critical part of maintaining your health lies in protecting your hearing which is a staggering conclusion. Being sick can be costly, so taking care of your hearing also safeguards your financial well being.
Preserving Your Hearing And Your Health
Hearing loss is a perfectly typical part of the aging process, though it’s not exclusive to getting older. Because of accidents, occupational hazards, and disease, hearing loss can happen at any age.
However, it’s essential to address any hearing loss you may be noticing. Your health could depend on it.