If you’re worried about your own hearing or that of a loved one, you’re not alone.
When people become aware of hearing loss, they’re often unsure of what to do because they don’t know anybody else who has hearing loss or wears hearing aids—so they have no one to turn to for advice or help.
As hearing care providers at SLENT Hearing and Balance Center we often give professional guidance and advice but, just like you, the people we talk to want to hear from people who have been in a similar situation or circumstances.
If you or somebody you know is looking for guidance and direction regarding hearing challenges, then this article is for you.
Fortunately for us (and you!), several of our patients were eager to share their stories to help encourage more local people to get the help they need.
We encourage you to share this article with whomever you believe needs to see it.
Rocky Was Annoyed That Everyone Around Him Was Mumbling
“My biggest concern was I would get irritated at people talking to me, thinking that it was their fault that I couldn’t hear what they were saying because they were not speaking up loud enough.”
Because he was being tested annually at work, Rocky was aware that he was struggling with high-frequency hearing loss. However, he stopped being tested after retirement and steered clear of hearing aids because they cost too much and he believed they would just make everything louder.
In addition to high-frequency hearing loss, Rocky was struggling with tinnitus, which further complicated his hearing challenges.
“I was skeptical at first, but my family insisted I get checked because it was getting out of hand that I had to keep asking people to repeat themselves.”
When he learned that hearing aids would be programmed to address his specific hearing loss needs and could be custom-molded to fit his ears, he decided they were worth the investment.
“You don’t realize how bad your hearing loss really is until you’ve worn the right hearing aids. Then you find out what you are missing. Now I hear things I haven’t heard in years. I can be in a conversation and understand what everyone is saying.”
Catherine Felt She Was Being Left Out by Her Friends and Family
Catherine first came to terms with her hearing loss when it began to affect her socially.
She often felt “left out because [she] didn’t know what people were saying,” so she “could not be a part of the conversation.”
When she visited SLENT, she was “welcomed by the friendly staff” and was particularly impressed with Dr. Martinez, who is “professional in his knowledge of the hearing aids he recommends.”
She can now hear the conversations she was missing, and in certain situations she can use her iPhone to adjust the reception.
While Catherine understands that it takes time to achieve better hearing, she believes that SLENT is the best place to start.
“Dr. Martinez will make sure you are properly fitted with the correct aids to really improve your ability to hear what’s going on around you.”
Two Most Common Stumbling Blocks
Seven years is the amount of time the average person waits from first signs of hearing loss to the day they finally get the help they need.
However, if you ask those who have successfully achieved better hearing, every one of them will tell you that they wish they had taken action sooner.
Worst of all, hearing loss gets worse when left untreated and can lead to other negative physical and mental health issues.
Once your natural hearing is gone, it can never be recovered, which means protecting your hearing health and seeking treatment as soon as possible are essential parts of your overall wellness.
There are two major stumbling blocks that cause most people to avoid getting the help they need.
#1—The Hearing Aid Stigma
Did you grow up dreaming of the day when you could get your first hearing aids?
No one is ever excited to get their first pair of hearing aids, but unless some medical or technological breakthrough occurs, hearing aids are still the most effective way to restore your capacity to hear the sounds and conversations that make life worth living.
Most of us are concerned about what others may think when they see that we’re wearing hearing aids.
However, that age-old stigma is rapidly disappearing because today’s hearing aid technology is smaller, lighter weight, more powerful, and far more discreet to wear than the hearing aids from decades past.
Many of our patients have told us that various family members, friends, and colleagues have never noticed their hearing aids!
If the hearing aid stigma is your biggest stumbling block, then you’re encouraged to schedule an appointment and try them—what you discover will surprise you!
#2—The Price of Investment
You are already aware that quality hearing aid technology and hearing care support require a significant investment. There’s no point in covering that up.
However, like any investment, you have to consider what you will receive in return.
First, consider the cost of leaving your hearing loss untreated. Hearing loss can lead to:
- Social isolation and broken relationships
- Depression and anxiety
- Cognitive decline and dementia
- Dizziness, vertigo, and balance issues
- Increased risk of accidents (caused by not hearing warnings or instructions, balance-related falls, etc.)
Numerous studies have proven that hearing aids prevent, reduce your risk of developing, or reverse the effects of these negative health conditions.
Your return on investment may not show up in the financial ledgers, but you will see it in an improved quality of life and your ability to continue enjoying your active, independent lifestyle.
It’s Your Move
If you (or your loved one) are ready to make a decision that you’ll thank yourself for making in the future, your next move is to schedule a hearing evaluation at SLENT Hearing and Balance Center to assess your hearing and discuss your options.