Updated: Nov 16, 2020
By: Angela Seuser, AuD
Happy New Year, Watertown Community! Along with the New Year, many people feel refreshed, motivated, and encouraged to make some new resolutions or goals for the year ahead. More specifically, self-care and your health is becoming a very important topic. This matter is continually talked about and encouraged in order to be the best version of you. Well guess what? Your hearing is a part of that overall picture. Hearing should be treated just like the rest of your overall health. Most people have annual eye and teeth exams, annual physicals, and so on. You use your ability to hear as much as your eyes to see, your teeth to chew, and your body to get around. Therefore, your hearing is just another piece of the puzzle that should be attended to. Think about your life style and the sounds you encounter in your daily environments, the conversations you have with loved ones or even strangers.
Think about the frustrations that come along with simply not being able to hear to the best of your ability. Studies have shown that untreated hearing loss can lead to depression, advanced memory decline such as dementia, and finally, isolation. Now think about the possibility of preventing that by one simple action and seeking professional attention by a hearing healthcare provider. With hearing loss, there is a lack of brain stimulation in the regions of the loss. When this happens, those parts of the brain become dormant or those neurons take off and do other things within the brain. Ultimately, this can lead to an inability to properly process sound (i.e. understand and decode speech). Most people wait nearly 7 years before stepping foot into a ‘hearing clinic’ to assess their hearing. There are so many stigmas related to hearing aids and hearing loss that people are afraid or embarrassed to find out what where they stand.But many people don’t stop to think about how their hearing loss is holding them back from the most simple, daily situations.
If you or a loved one are starting to notice some signs of hearing loss such as: difficulty understanding speech, especially in background noise, turning up the television or radio, asking for repetitions often, or experience noise (i.e., ringing in the ears), please consider having your hearing assessed. Even if you’re not experiencing any of those symptoms, it is still recommended that you obtain a baseline to have in your medical record.