Posted on Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Top Five Bad Habits of People with Hearing Loss

There are ways people with untreated hearing loss compensate for their deficit. Not all of them are useful. In fact, some of these habits can lead to significant communicative difficulties, social isolation, frustration, depression, and delays in treatment. So what are the top five bad habits of people with untreated hearing loss?

Dependence on Others
Relying on a family member to help relate unheard information is one of the ways people with hearing loss avoid addressing their condition. In addition to it being a frustrating chore for a family member, loved one, or friend, it can also inhibit relationships. The person with hearing loss feels "outside" the conversation and becomes less comfortable asking to have things repeated. They can even begin to withdraw from communicating. Eventually, conversations are initiated only when it is absolutely necessary, leading the hearing impaired to feel left out and ignored. Asking your loved one to take this hearing health survey may help them to recognize their condition and seek help.

It’s easy to understand why someone with untreated hearing loss will turn the volume up without recognizing how loud it really is. Not only will they not understand how it can be bothersome for others, often they will blame room acoustics, background noise, or mumbling instead of recognizing and treating their condition. In addition, hiring the volume to uncomfortable levels can cause relationship stress and further isolation, as the hearing impaired may use a separate room so as not bother loved ones.

Your loud uncle, aunt, or grandfather might not be just a loud person, he actually might not be able to hear well. People with hearing loss often overcompensate by talking too loudly. This misplaced attempt to make up for their disability can be because they misread social cues thus speaking out of turn or just a way to deflect awareness. If the hearing loss has not been identified, friends and family may mistakenly associate this behavior with aging or senility. This further isolates the person with hearing loss as they might not recognize their own condition and begin to feel feelings of shame and inadequacy. If your loved one engages in this habit, please take them to have their hearing tested.

Hearing loss is subtle, and so too are some of the tactics people engage in to deny or conceal their hearing loss. Like overcompensating, concealing hearing loss can often be interpreted as senility or aging or disconnection. Does your loved one smile, nod, or pretend to understand what has been said to get them over an awkward moment? If so this pretense might get them over an awkward moment, at least to their perception, but it becomes a burden and may lead to depression, low self-esteem, and the avoidance of social situations.


As the tactics used to deny hearing loss begin to take their toll, and the added stress and anxiety takes its toll, the person in denial of hearing loss begins to withdrawal from the world. This isolation leads to severe depression and feelings of worthlessness as people fail to recognize their mistakes and concentration issues are the result of untreated hearing loss. Correcting hearing loss through hearing aids can go a long way to ending these hearing loss strategies and return a loved one to optimal hearing health.

It is vitally important for someone with hearing loss to see a physician or an audiologist as soon as these signs or any change in hearing is noticed. An audiological evaluation establishes a diagnosis allowing for appropriate treatment and a return to hearing health. If you need help finding an audiologist click HERE to be connected with the largest network of trusted hearing health professionals in the nation!

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