People with hearing loss have to deal with adapting to life with hearing aids, and it can be even more difficult when negative stereotypes and stigma get in the way. People wait an average of seven years before getting hearing aids after noticing their hearing loss. Being hard of hearing poses many challenges for those who experience it, and it can greatly affect their everyday lives and the lives of their loved ones. Hearing loss is also associated with old age, but people of all ages, even children, have to deal with the loss of hearing.
If you have a hearing loss, the good news is that 95 percent of hearing losses can be treated with hearing aids. Yet fewer than 20 percent of people with hearing loss choose to correct it. Why don’t more people seek hearing help?
A study published in 2010 by Margaret I. Wallhagen, Ph.D., found that the perceived stigma associated with hearing loss negatively impacts an individual’s initial acceptance of it and whether or not they choose to wear hearing aids. The study found that hearing loss stigma is directly related to three main factors: alteration in self-perception, ageism, and vanity. Unfortunately, just the idea of wearing hearing aids was found to negatively change self-perception for participants in the study. Participants perceived themselves differently and worried about how they would be viewed by others if they wore hearing aids before they actually tried them. The study also found that the negative associations were markedly diminished if the hearing aids were discreet and unnoticeable.
The stigma associated with hearing loss and hearing aids often prevents a person from seeking hearing help. Typically the same people that worry needlessly are pleased to find that there are many discreet customizable options that greatly improve quality of life.
Don’t let the stigma prevent you from living life to the fullest. Sharing ideas and participating in activities depends greatly on your ability to hear.
Investing in better hearing should be a priority. If you or a loved one is experiencing hearing difficulties, don’t wait. You owe it to yourself and to those around you to hear your very best. There are a number of discreet hearing solutions available.
Don’t let the stigma of wearing hearing aids get in the way of your quality of life. Call Schmidt’s Optical and Hearing™ today at 772-286-4327 and schedule your FREE comprehensive hearing screening with our Board Certified Hearing Aid Specialist