Myths surrounding hearing aids often keep people from seeking treatment for their hearing loss. A recent AARP-ASHA survey reported on by the Hearing Journal found that many seniors had decided to live with hearing loss rather than get corrective treatment. Some respondents said the cost of investing in hearing aids kept them from today's successful hearing loss treatments. But it is also thought seniors declined to treat hearing loss because the true costs, emotional, physical, and mental decline, not to mention the added strain on society and families goes widely unrecognized. Sandra Hildebrant learned all about what hearing loss was costing her. At 72 Sandra was surprised to discover her hearing loss had cut her off from family and friends.
Successfully treating hearing loss has many wonderful social, emotional, and health benefits, and as Sandra Hildebrant pointed out in her recent letter to People Hearing Better, it also helps people to reconnect with life and family.
Sometimes it takes the extra push of a friend or family member to get seniors to recognize or seek treatment for their hearing loss.
Sandra Hildebrant's husband always seemed to be mumbling when he spoke. Sandra would shake her head in consternation and tell him to speak up. To her, he had a rather low voice. It came as quite a surprise to her then when he announced that he'd made an appointment for her to have hearing checked. She decided to go along to make him happy, but what the tests revealed came as a real shock. When the doctor asked Sandra's husband to speak, with his mouth shielded from her vision, she was stunned to discover she'd only got 65% of the words correct. Unbeknownst to her, Sandra had developed a lip reading skill. As Sandra humorously stated in her letter, "Who knew?"
Often people with hearing loss blame others for mumbling or having low voices, never suspecting that they have hearing loss.
Sandra received her new hearing aids about a week later. Sandra's successful treatment of her hearing loss was soon obvious when she discovered that her need to say, "Excuse me?" had disappeared almost entirely. She began listening again to the Classical music she loved and was amazed to realize all the sounds she'd been missing. As Sandra put it, "Even the "ting" of a triangle is now clearly heard!" This wasn't the only sound Sandra had been missing. Before her success with hearing aids, Sandra found it difficult to have a conversation on the phone with her grandson. To her, he sounded as if he had a mouth full of marbles. Not suspecting her hearing loss, she made up the excuse that he was a teenager and didn't really want to talk with his grandmother. She was wrong. Since receiving her hearing aids, she speaks to her grandson often and has, "Some great talks with him!"
Inability to her the voices of children and women is often one of the first signs of hearing loss.
Her grandson wasn't the only family member that had been cut off from Sandra due to her hearing loss. Before her successful hearing aid treatment, Sandra's 11 year-old granddaughter spoke so quickly Sandra would often have to ask her to slow down or repeat things. That is no longer the case. In fact, if Sandra asks her to repeat things now, her granddaughter is quick to ask, "Grammy, do you have your "ears" in?" Sandra has to hand it to her perceptive granddaughter, because more often than not, Sandra has just come back from water aerobics or recently stepped out of the shower. When asked if she has any regrets when it comes to her new hearing aids, Sandra replies, "My only regret is that I wish I had been tested sooner!"
Thank you for your letter, Sandra! People Hearing Better is always happy to hear from someone who has successfully treated their hearing loss and reconnected with the family and the world. Hearing loss left untreated can have serious physical and emotional repercussions. If you are aware of your hearing loss or the hearing loss of a loved one see a certified hearing health professional. Investing in a hearing instrument may seem an unnecessary expense, but the only thing more precious than your mental, physical, and emotional health is connecting with your loved ones.
If you'd like to learn more about hearing loss, hearing heath, and hearing aids click HERE to DOWNLOAD our free guide to hearing health!
This guide will teach you:
▪ The 3 different types of hearing loss
▪ How to help a loved one hear you
▪ 8 different hearing aid styles
▪ Advances in digital and wireless hearing aid technology.