It is well known in the hearing aid industry that a person with hearing loss waits an average of seven years before pursuing help for their hearing. This is a long time to live with hearing loss, especially considering recent research indicating that untreated hearing loss is associated with an earlier onset of cognitive decline. To help those in need of encouragement, I have outlined some common reasons people delay treating their hearing impairment, and I offer insight on how to reframe typical negative reactions to wearing hearing aids.
The cost of hearing aids is undoubtedly the most confusing and frustrating issue facing those obtaining hearing aids. Some providers bundle all services, some unbundle, some only offer one manufacturer, which could be a private label. Even though this all seems overwhelming, it is important to remember that the cost for obtaining hearing aids may be much less than you think. At Adaptive Audiology Solutions we charge for the hearing aids and the first two months of appointments. This keeps the price of hearing aids lower, and patients like that they are only paying for what they need and not an inflated, bundled price for services they may never use. We also offer financing and a lease-to-own program. We are proud to offer a variety of options for hearing loss treatment that can work for any financial situation.
Many people are concerned about how a hearing aid will look, and that it will enhance the perception that they “look old”. Surprisingly, research is telling us the opposite-that wearing hearing aids will help your body and brain stay young! From preserving balance function to delaying cognitive decline, treating hearing loss is one of the most impactful ways you can improve your brain’s health. Also, I have noticed over the years that most people are very delighted when trying on hearing aids for the first time. Today’s hearing aids are much more discreet and often can blend in with our skin, hair, or eyeglasses.
When facing something new, there is always a fear of how it will change our life. Hearing aids have traditionally had many negative connotations that stem from older family member’s experiences with their older, analog hearing aids. These negative experiences include squealing or whistling hearing aids, having to constantly adjust the volume, or frequent changing of batteries. Thankfully, these issues are all problems of the past! Hearing aid technologies today are virtually whistle-free, automatically adjust to the environment around you, and have rechargeable batteries. And these are just a few of the technological advancements developed in recent years!
Additional motivators to treating hearing loss include maintaining relationships with family-being able to hear your little grandchildren or great-grandchildren, hearing your friends at coffee, or hearing the pastor at your church. In general, being involved in the conversation instead of only being an observer is often excellent motivation. For some, job performance can be greatly affected by lack of hearing, and can result in lost income and job opportunities. There is no reason to live with these negative side effects of hearing loss!
We don’t choose to have hearing loss, but we can choose how we manage it. Don’t let the fact that you have hearing loss make you feel poorly about yourself. Don’t put other’s opinions of you ahead of your own cognitive health and connection with others. And remember, the first step is having your hearing tested. Adaptive Audiology Solutions is humbled to be a part of your journey towards better hearing.