Hearing loss is a common condition that can be mitigated easily by using hearing aids and assistive listening devices. But a greater incident of depression and feelings of isolation happens when hearing loss goes untreated and undiscovered.
And it can quickly become a vicious circle where solitude and depression from hearing loss bring about a breakdown in personal and work relationship resulting in even worse depression and isolation. This is a problem that doesn’t have to happen, and getting that hearing loss treated is the key to ending the downward spiral.
Research Connects Hearing Loss to Depression
Symptoms of depression have been continuously linked, according to numerous studies, to hearing loss. One study of individuals who suffer from neglected hearing loss discovered that adults 50 years or older were more likely to document symptoms of depression, along with signs of paranoia or anxiety. And it was also more likely that those people would retreat from social engagement. Many couldn’t understand why it seemed like people were getting angry with them. However, relationships were improved for those who wore hearing aids, who noted that friends, family, and co-workers all recognized the difference.
Another study discovered that individuals between the ages of 18 and 70, revealed a more acute sense of depression if they suffered from hearing loss of more than 25 dB. People over the age of 70 with a self-diagnosed hearing loss didn’t show a significant difference in depression rates in comparison to individuals who didn’t suffer from hearing loss. But all other demographics contain people who aren’t getting the help that they need for their hearing loss. And individuals who participated in a different study revealed that those participants who managed their hearing loss using hearing aids had a lower rate of depression.
ignorance or Unwillingness to Use Hearing Aids Impacts Mental Health
It seems apparent that with these kinds of results people would wish to seek out help with their hearing loss. However, two factors have prevented people from getting help. Some people assume that their hearing is working just fine when it actually isn’t. They have themselves convinced that people are mumbling or even that they are talking softly on purpose. The other factor is that some people may not recognize that they have a hearing impairment. To them, it seems like others get tired of talking to them.
If you are someone who regularly feels like people are talking quietly or mumbling and it’s causing you to feel anxiety or even depression, it’s time for a hearing examination. If there’s hearing loss, that person should talk about which hearing aid is right for them. You could possibly feel a lot better if you go to see a hearing specialist.