Everyone knows at least one person who'd prefer to stoically suffer in silence with a problem rather than seek the support of others. While this can be a sign of resilience, a new study shows that this may not be the best idea when it comes to hearing loss.
Estimated to affect one in six of us, according to the Australian Network on Disability*, hearing loss can have a considerable impact on our wellbeing, especially when left untreated. However, even though there are treatments and solutions available, there are still a number of people who choose not to acknowledge that they are having trouble with their hearing.
The dangers of ignoring hearing loss
One of the characteristics of hearing loss is that it is not outwardly visible, making it sometimes difficult to know whether someone is living with it.
"Many hard of hearing people battle silently with their invisible hearing difficulties, straining to stay connected to the world around them, reluctant to seek help," says Dr David Myers, a professor of psychology who himself lives with hearing loss*.
As Dr Myers explains to the American Psychological Association (APA), when compared to hearing aid wearers, people who don't use hearing aids are 50 per cent more likely to experience sadness or depression*.
In addition, hearing loss, when left undiagnosed or untreated, also has the potential to become worse, according to the Scripps Research Institute*, making it vital to seek treatment as soon as possible.
"Anger, frustration, depression and anxiety are all common among people who find themselves hard of hearing," says Dr Myers. "Getting people to use the latest in hearing aid technology can help them regain control of their life and achieve emotional stability and even better cognitive functioning."*
If you or someone you know has been struggling with everyday listening situations, it could be time to talk to an audiologist. You can click here or call 1800 340 631 to request an appointment with your local Audika clinic.