Do you feel pressure from your family or friends to do something about your hearing? Does your spouse say they are tired of repeating themselves?
Often, families find themselves struggling as a whole when a loved one has untreated hearing loss. This can strain not only a friendship or family dynamic, but also those closest to us, such as a romantic relationship.
The American Speech and Hearing Association reports that only 1 out of 4 people who need hearing aids actually wear them! That suggests that 75% of people who need amplification are putting undue stress on their friends, family and loved ones forcing those relationships to become strained.
Beattie Group (beattiegroup.com) published a study conducted by Specsavers in 2009 that gave some staggering reports on relationships and hearing loss. It was reported that 1,500 people, ages 55 and older, were surveyed reporting that 44% indicate that their relationships have suffered due to their hearing loss. Additionally, 34% have fallen out of touch with friends and family members directly due to the communication breakdown between each other.
What can be done to repair these communication channels and repair these relationships?[/cs_text][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”] How Hearing Affects Speech Recognition [/x_custom_headline][x_gap size=”30px”][cs_text]In general, individuals with “normal hearing” do not tend to enter into many types of situation that they cannot communicate naturally, regardless of the environment. We all know quiet environments such as libraries or a local book shop are simply the ideal communication forum. Regardless that you are to “keep quiet” when in these settings, it is absolutely ideal for having a conversation.
In contrast, a local restaurant bar on a Friday night is not particularly an ideal situation for communication. However, individuals with “normal hearing” aren’t dissuaded from attending this type of situation because they’re worried whether or not they’ll be able to carry on a conversation. They may be deterred by personal preferences in location, menu, etc., but not specifically from worrying about whether they’re going to be able to hear their friends or family well.
This type of withdrawal from social gatherings is difficult for individuals with hearing loss. It alienates them and causes friendships to be lost or strained unnecessarily. It is extremely important for loved ones to feel heard and connected with when in relationships. These types of emotions are what build and strengthen connections between us all. If we are unable to create these bonds through communication, we can feel isolated or even depressed. [/cs_text][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”] How Hearing Loss Affects Our Personal Relationships [/x_custom_headline][x_gap size=”30px”][cs_text]Recently, a study or interview process was conducted by Action on Hearing loss called “In it Together: The impact of hearing loss on personal relationships.” Overall, the goal was to interview the 23 participants and get their real-world view and perspective on the hearing loss associated with their partner.
Participants in this study indicated the positive side of their relationship in a supportive and mutually respected capacity in regards to hearing loss. However, they also indicated that even the most supportive and respectful partner still can’t empathize directly with those effected by the loss. They can’t understand the amount of physical stress that hearing loss causes along with the mental and emotional strain of constantly having to be attentive to everything everyone is saying when in a group setting. In addition to that, managing background noise. This study also reported on participants, those with hearing loss, and how the hearing loss has specifically changed their relationship due to having to combat a loss. [/cs_text][x_custom_headline level=”h2″ looks_like=”h5″ accent=”false”] What to Do If You Experience a Hearing Loss
[/x_custom_headline][x_gap size=”30px”][cs_text]Overall, healthy relationships and hearing loss may not go hand in hand, but it’s absolutely something that can be managed easily. Typically, the first step is recognizing there’s an issue. Once hearing loss is diagnosed, there are a series of emotions that occur not only individually, but even between partners.
Some negative emotions of a diagnosis of hearing loss are resentment, loneliness, avoidance, loss of friendships, inability to joke or catch a punch line. But, considering how common and natural hearing loss is, there is a positive side to addressing the issue. Treating your hearing loss will reconnect you to your loved ones.
Once a diagnosis is made, it is very important to address the loss immediately so as not to hinder any relationships you may have. Here at Preferred Hearing Centers, we work with you to find the best course of treatment for your needs. Treating hearing loss has been found to improve the quality of life of not only those affected, but also the friends, family, and loved ones closest to them.
So has communication with your family suffered? What do you do if you feel you are missing out on conversations with loved ones? The next step is to call us at Preferred Hearing Centers and start moving in the direction of better hearing health for not only you, but the sake of your loved ones as well.