Hearing loss affects millions of Americans. It’s estimated that almost 15% of American adults in the U.S. experience hearing loss.
We value our hearing. A recent poll related by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) showed just how much. Up to 80% of Americans “say maintaining their hearing heath is extremely important or very important to their quality of life.”
Despite this, only 20% of adults have had their hearing tested in the past 5 years. That’s compared to 61% of us who have had a video test. Talk about a huge difference!
Each year, May is celebrated as Better Hearing and Speech month. The aim is to raise awareness of communication disorders. This year’s theme is Building Connections. Building connections with hearing loss may be challenging, but not impossible!
Building Connections with Hearing Loss
One of the best things you can do to help improve your connections, is to seek treatment for your hearing loss. Your hearing healthcare specialist can then recommend a number of options. One potential option to improve your hearing are hearing aid devices.
Let’s take a closer look at building connections with hearing loss through hearing aids.
How Hearing Loss Affects Relationships
It’s estimated that only 20 percent of people who could benefit from hearing aids actually wear them. An ASHA Leader’s study found that of the participants with hearing loss, 35% said that out of all their relationships, the one with their significant other suffered the most.
Another study carried out in Britain highlighted how hearing loss can affect relationships:
- 69% reported that their ability to participate in everyday conversations with friends and family is hindered by their hearing loss.
- 44% highlighted that hearing loss has caused the relationships with their partner, friends, or family to suffer.
- 34% reported that the breakdown in communication as a result of hearing loss caused them to lose touch with friends. In some cases, marriages fell apart.
Building Connections with Hearing Aids
If you recognize that your hearing is impacting your relationship with others, don’t delay seeking treatment. Close to 30 million U.S. adults could benefit from using hearing aids.
Here are four ways that hearing aids can help communication and bolster your relationship:
- Better Communication: We’d say this is probably the #1 reason to wear a hearing aid if you have a hearing loss. Hearing aids can open up a world of communication again; gone are the “what’s” or “can you repeat that?”. Instead, you’ll be able to discuss emotions, ideals, and future plans with your partner.
- Fewer Arguments: Most couples will admit that it’s often the small, petty things that can cause an argument. What volume to have the TV at may not seem like a big issue, but small disagreements like this can have long-lasting repercussions on a relationship. The restoration of hearing that comes with wearing hearing aids can make arguments over the TV volume a thing of the past.
- Spend More Time Together Socially: Many people with a hearing loss avoid social situations. The embarrassment of finding it hard to hear can often push a person to isolate themselves. Hearing aids can help to filter out background noises to enhance the overall listening experience. The increased confidence that comes as a result can bolster the time that you can spend together with your partner socially.
- Hearing Aids Can Restore Your Independence: Hearing loss can cause one partner to rely on the other to be their translator. This can cause problems in a relationship, but also result in a loss of independence. Hearing aids remove that burden and restore your independence and your relationship dynamic again.
Trust the Professionals at Hearing Balance & Speech Center
The first step to building connections with hearing loss is to seek treatment. Regular hearing assessments can help monitor any changes to your hearing health. It can also reduce the impact that hearing loss can have on your quality of life.
If you’d like to book an appointment, the hearing healthcare specialists at Hearing, Balance & Speech Center would be happy to help. Please call us today on 203-774-5642 or request an appointment online.