Did you know you hear in your brain?
Unchecked hearing loss can have serious consequences. One of many great reasons to have your hearing checked!
Social effects of hearing loss
- We can isolate ourselves and avoid gatherings because asking people to repeat themselves becomes embarrassing.
- We can lose touch with our grandchildren because their voices are difficult to hear.
- We may be excluded from activities, as others stop inviting us because they’re tired of trying to be understood.
- We can upset those we care about through the strain that hearing loss puts on the relationship.
Emotional effects of hearing loss
- When we are unable to follow a conversation or instructions, we can feel less competent.
- When people say, “What’s wrong with you?”, our self-esteem can lower.
- When we become more isolated, we’re more likely to feel alone.
Medical effects of hearing loss
- We lose brain tissue mass at a faster rate with hearing loss. John Hopkins’ research shows that hearing loss has a higher rate of shrinkage in brain tissue mass than aging alone. This creates a higher rate of depression, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and hospital stays.
- When we can’t effectively process sound, it can create a speech impediment that makes it more difficult to be understood.
Safety effects of hearing loss
- We don’t hear or are unable to locate the direction of sirens or horns while travelling.
- We don’t hear warning calls.
- We don’t hear cries for help from our loved ones.
- We experience an increased occurrence of falls due to an auditory imbalance.
Reducing brain tissue shrinkage
Since hearing loss is a gradual process and usually happens over a period of time, we often don’t realize it’s happening to us. Most people suffer from sensorineural hearing loss, which means there is actual nerve damage in the inner ear. If these nerves aren’t stimulated by the sounds around us, they don’t send a signal to the brain, which leads to shrinkage of brain tissue. Hearing aids change the way sound is sent into the ear and onward to the brain, reactivating the hearing centres in our brain and reducing brain tissue shrinkage.