Did you know that one in three people over the age of 65 experience some degree of hearing loss – whether or not they acknowledge it? As the third most common medical condition in the US, hearing loss may happen to anyone at any age – but it is especially common in older adults. Hearing loss tends to be an incredibly isolating condition, due to its adverse effects on our ability to communicate. When left untreated, hearing loss could harm our interpersonal relationships with our loved ones.
This Father’s Day, take the opportunity to discuss with hearing health with the father figure in your life, whether it is your dad, grandpa, stepdad, or father-in-law!
How Hearing Loss Affects Relationships
Healthy communication is the foundation of healthy relationships. Through conversation, we share ourselves and our inner worlds with one another. With hearing loss, speech recognition becomes difficult, leading to poor communication. In turn, this could lead to unhealthy relationships, in which people become frustrated and isolated.
Indeed, the topic of hearing loss comes with much weight and is often considered a taboo, especially because it is linked to aging. However, it is important to understand that hearing loss is a natural occurrence among many older people. Presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss, happens naturally with the process of aging. In other words, it is not a failing nor can it be overcome simply by will.
Hearing loss is irreversible, and therefore it must be treated to restore one’s hearing abilities. Making accommodations for hearing loss are common, such as turning up the volume on the TV or radio or asking people to repeat themselves. Over time, however, these accommodations will begin to falter and the best way to ensure that people stay connected to their loved ones is to encourage them to take a hearing test.
When you’re having a heart to heart with your father, and you notice that he may exhibit some of the signs of hearing loss, encourage him to take a hearing test.
Seeking Treatment for Hearing Loss
Hearing loss is identified and measured through a series of painless hearing tests. The audiogram will give you a clear visualization of your hearing abilities, by ear. If a hearing loss is detected, our team at Fidelity Hearing Centers will work with you to find the best solution to meet your needs.
The most common treatment for hearing loss is the prescription of hearing aids. Hearing aids are selected to treat your specific hearing needs, with fine-tuning to ensure the best listening experience. The adjustment period for new hearing aids requires patience and practice, but over time, people with hearing loss experience significant benefits.
Adjusting to New Hearing Aids
If you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with a hearing loss and has just been fitted for hearing aids, the experience of sound may be overwhelming at first. The period of adjustment requires some time and patience in order to truly experience the benefits of hearing aids. It does take time to get used to amplified, crystal-clear sound. Here are a few tips for adjusting.
Avoid wearing your hearing aids immediately in loud situations, such as a restaurant or a grocery store. Start slowly at first, wearing your hearing aids around your home. Get used to your own voice by reading aloud to yourself.
As you grow more comfortable, invite your loved ones over for coffee or a meal. Ease into conversations with them. During these visits, avoid playing music in the background and turn off any other distractions (TV, radio, etc.). Use this opportunity to reconnect with your loved ones while also practicing hearing with your new hearing aids.
Visit Us at Fidelity Hearing Center
At Fidelity Hearing Centers, we provide hearing health care for the entire family. There are many benefits that come with treating hearing loss, from improving your overall health and well-being to ensuring that you are connected to your loved ones.
If you are experiencing changes in your hearing and have yet to take a hearing test, contact us today at Fidelity Hearing Center. We provide comprehensive hearing tests and hearing aid fittings to ensure healthy communication with your loved ones.