February 26, 2024

Treating Hearing Loss Helps You Stay Socially Connected

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Do you have an active lifestyle and love being social?

Maybe meeting with family and friends is the highlight of every week. You rely on your sense of hearing to help you interact with loved ones. Hearing is an important part of connecting with others and staying socially connected. Your sense of hearing is what lets you hear each word and keep up with conversations. However, if you’ve noticed recent changes in your hearing health, social interactions may be getting harder. You find yourself asking people to repeat words and phrases. And try as you might, it’s difficult to hear what’s being said. This can lead to feelings of anxiety when you’re with friends and make it hard to stay socially connected.

Hearing Loss and Social Isolation

Hearing loss makes it very challenging to hear conversations. This is especially true in places with a lot of background noise. Social activities with friends tend to get loud or happen in noisy venues. So, it becomes harder to tune out background noise and pick out speech sounds. It can be difficult to follow conversations or keep up as different friends chime in. If you have hearing loss, social situations can make you feel anxious. You may worry about what your friends think of you. You often misunderstand what’s been said, and you never laugh at the right time. And you don’t want to keep interrupting the conversation to ask someone to repeat what they said. Instead, you smile and nod, and hope no one asks you a direct question. Hearing loss can lead to social isolation. When it’s this hard to hear, it might seem easier and less embarrassing to just stay home. Sure, you miss your friends, but you don’t need to worry so much about your hearing loss. Choosing to stay home and avoid social activities can leave you feeling isolated and alone.

Social Isolation is More Than a Feeling

Have you been disconnected from your friend group? After you stop attending social activities or skip a few family events, the communication gap widens. It’s easier to keep staying home rather than trying to catch up with everything that’s happened since the last time you joined the group. Social isolation can be more than just a passing feeling. If you’re feeling socially isolated or cut off from loved ones, you have a higher risk of developing ongoing feelings of loneliness, sadness, and even depression.

Hearing Aids for Social Lifestyles

Hearing loss makes it hard to follow conversations. There are some sounds you just can’t hear. For example, sensorineural hearing loss often affects higher-pitched sounds. Consonant sounds in speech are often higher pitched. So even though you may hear most of the words in a conversation, there are a few key sounds you’re missing. This makes it very difficult to actually understand the words you’re hearing. That’s where hearing aids come in! Hearing aids are designed with conversations in mind. They have sophisticated programs that amplify speech sounds so it’s easier to hear every sound you need to hear. Hearing aids for social lifestyles also have programs that decrease background noise. You’ll be able to follow conversations even at a noisy restaurant. The sounds you don’t want to hear will fade more into the background, letting your ears and brain focus on the sounds you’re straining to hear.

Treating Hearing Loss

Don’t let hearing loss hold you back! You can stay socially connected and love every minute you spend with friends. We have a wide selection of hearing aids from top manufacturers that are designed for every lifestyle. Some of our devices offer additional features like streaming capabilities. You can connect your hearing aids directly to your phone or TV so you can be more social at home. Enjoy phone calls and video chats without straining to hear. Sounds will stream right to your ears and you’ll get to enjoy crystal clear sound quality. Come find your perfect hearing aids today!

Dr. Teague earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Hearing, Speech and Language from Ohio University and his Doctoral Degree in Audiology from The University of Louisville. He is an active member of the American Academy of Audiology and the Ohio Board of Audiology.

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