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For a long time, hearing loss carried a huge stigma. People didn’t want to be seen as old and hearing aids were a visible sign that they didn’t have all their original faculties intact. These days, with prominent celebrities like Halle Berry, Jodie Foster and Bill Clinton not just wearing hearing aids but talking about them, that stigma is being battled and subdued. Everyone is walking around with something in their ears these days anyhow, including headphones, ear buds, and Bluetooth devices. To fight the stigma of hearing aids it’s important to understand the common misconceptions that people are still holding on to.
Myth: Hearing loss happens only to old people.
In fact, 40 percent of the 48 million Americans with hearing loss are younger than 60. While hearing loss does accelerate with age exposure to harmful noise can happen at any age. Every day, we experience sound in our environment, such as the sounds from television and radio, household appliances, and traffic. Normally, these sounds are at safe levels that don’t damage our hearing. However sounds can be harmful when they are too loud, even for a brief time, or when they are both loud and long lasting. These sounds can damage sensitive structures in the inner ear and cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). People of all ages, including children, teens, young adults, and older people, can develop Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL).
Myth: Your hearing loss was caused by all those rock concerts years ago.
While the rock concerts of your youth didn’t help protect your hearing there are many other contributors, including the normal aging process, genetics, medications, smoking, a poor diet and diabetes. All of these can damage or destroy the hair cells in the inner ear that send auditory signals to your brain. Once hair cells are damaged they cannot be repaired. When your ears are damaged in this way the best form of treatment are almost always hearing aids.
Myth: I’d know if I had hearing loss.
Hearing loss is often so gradual that you may not notice it at first. As your hearing loss increases, you may compensate by turning up the volume or asking people to repeat themselves. We all tend to be stubborn. It’s common to deny the problem initially, and then blame others for mumbling or keeping the TV volume too low. But the fact is, people without hearing loss don’t need to convince others that “I can hear just fine!” If others tell you to you need a hearing test, it’s time to get one, especially when you consider that your odds of having hearing loss are 1 in 5.
Myth: It’s not worth the trouble to improve my hearing.
Better hearing will improve your life, especially your relationships with friends, family and coworkers. Hearing loss can be frustrating for you and lead to social withdrawal and depression. It can frustrate your family when they constantly have to repeat themselves or leave the room because the TV is too loud. The best solution is to deal with hearing loss rather than act as if it isn’t a problem.
Myth: If other people would just talk louder, you would hear just fine.
There are allot of obstacles preventing you from hearing properly but people yelling so you can hear will just give people around you a horse throat. The goal of today’s hearing aid technology is both to make sounds louder and to reduce background noise and extract the more important features of sound to clarify speech so you can hear what you need to hear with out people having to shout.
Myth: It doesn’t matter if I put off getting hearing aids.
The sooner you address your hearing loss, the better. Hearing loss gets worse over time.
Researchers even have a name for this: “auditory deprivation.” The longer you ignore your hearing loss, the more hearing you’ll lose that can never be recovered. Hearing aids can help, but only if you have enough hearing left to be saved. And the longer you live with hearing loss, the harder it is to adjust to using hearing aids.
Don’t put off dealing with your hearing any longer. Contact us at Hearing Care Centers to get your hearing checked so we can find the best hearing aids for you and your spectacular lifestyle.