Coping with a little hearing impairment seems a lot easier than something significant like vision impairment. That said, it doesn’t come as a surprise that many people with impaired hearing choose to hide their condition.
But let’s get it clear. Though people may manage to get by a partial inability to hear without being open about their problem, hearing loss doesn’t necessarily have to be severe or profound to affect one’s life.
If overlooked or left untreated, even a mild hearing loss can impact on your day-to-day life, professional career, relationships and most importantly mental health.
Hiding is not worth it
Asking someone to repeat themselves once or twice while talking over the phone might not seem like a big deal. Neither might be missing out on a few words in a family conversation.
But you can’t overlook significant consequences like low self-esteem, depression and affected job performance and relationships, which hearing loss contribute to over time.
Ask yourself, “Is hiding your hearing condition worth missing your favourite music and sounds or isolating yourself from people and social world?” “Is putting off getting your hearing treated worth the negative impact it leaves on the quality of life?”
Most people who stress about the stigma associated with hearing impairment and hearing aids, fail to realise that untreated hearing loss is actually more noticeable than hearing aids.
If you respond inappropriately in a conversation or miss a punch line of a joke, people might suspect your attention span, mental acuity or your ability to communicate effectively. The symptoms of hearing loss combined with consequences of “untreated hearing loss” can be life altering.
Acceptance is the first step toward improving your hearing
While you can’t completely restore your natural hearing ability with hearing aids, there are several hearing loss solutions that can significantly improve your hearing and quality of life.
But to benefit from a hearing solution, you need to first accept your condition. Here’s how to accept your hearing loss.
A: Allow yourself to recognise the loss of hearing and the consequences you’re dealing with.
C: Communicate to others about your problem to seek their support and assistance.
C: Commit to improving your quality of life by getting your hearing assessed and finding the right hearing solution.
E: Explore different practices and exercises to boost your hearing abilities.
P: Partner with hearing loss community and interact with other people with hearing impairment.
T: Treat your condition. There are several choices when it comes to hearing aids such as Phonak, Starkey and Siemens hearing aids. To seek the optimal solution and expert assistance and advice, turn to an experienced audiologist.
A: Assist yourself. Let people you meet for the first time know you have a hearing problem. Remind them to be a bit louder and face you when speaking to you. Make a strategic seating arrangement for yourself when visiting a restaurant or someone’s house.
N: Never pull yourself away from social gatherings and activities because of your hearing loss or hearing aids. Most people get supportive once you tell them about your problem.
C: Connect with your hearing professional if you feel any discomfort while wearing your hearing aids.
E: Expect difficulties along the way even with your hearing solution. Keep a positive attitude towards difficulties to drive a seamless hearing experience.
If you’re dealing with a hearing loss, don’t wait. Get your hearing treated today!