Even though hearing loss is an extremely common issue, many people feel embarrassed or ashamed of it. Sadly, this can lead people to delay seeking the medical help they need or to avoid wearing aids, which prevents them from enhancing their hearing function. By consulting with an audiologist, however, you can begin to tackle your feelings surrounding hearing loss and access the support you may need.

Social stigma and hearing loss

If you’re experiencing hearing loss, taking part in conversations or social situations can be one of the most challenging aspects. When there is a lot of background noise, like in a restaurant or at a party, it can be particularly difficult to follow a one-to-one or group conversation. If you feel self-conscious about asking people to repeat themselves, this could limit your involvement and therefore your enjoyment. As a result, people with hearing loss may begin declining invitations or avoiding social situations altogether.

In addition to this, people sometimes feel ashamed of hearing loss because they associate it with a sign that they’re getting older. Although age-related hearing loss is very common, accepting reduced hearing function shouldn’t be seen as part of the aging process. With preventative hearing care, age-related loss can be avoided or greatly reduced. Furthermore, consulting an audiologist at the first sign of hearing loss can help to retain your existing hearing function and prevent your hearing loss from increasing.

Embarrassment and hearing aids

For some people, experiencing hearing loss doesn’t cause them to feel embarrassed but wearing a hearing aid does. Again, this might be because they associated hearing devices with older people or because they assume any hearing aid will be visible and conspicuous. 

Although there’s no need to feel ashamed about improving your hearing function with hearing aids, there are steps you can take to minimize the visibility of any hearing devices that you choose to wear. 

If you want to use a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid, for example, you could choose a style that looks more like a Bluetooth headset than a traditional hearing aid. Alternatively, you might want to choose an in-the-ear (ITE) hearing device, that simply sits in the outer bowl or an in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aid, that’s virtually invisible.

Are you self-conscious about hearing loss? 

When people are ashamed or self-conscious about hearing loss, they often avoid seeing an audiologist and accessing treatment. Ironically, their continued limited hearing function only makes their hearing loss more noticeable to other people. In fact, wearing a discreet hearing aid can be the most effective way to keep your hearing loss under wraps!

By having your hearing loss diagnosed and accessing the appropriate treatment, you can significantly enhance your hearing function and consequently increase your quality of life. If you’ve been avoiding social situations due to hearing loss embarrassment, for example, your improved hearing function will allow you to take a more active role in social engagements, without struggling to hear what’s going on around you and without feeling self-conscious. 

How is hearing loss diagnosed? 

Feeling ashamed of hearing loss is one of the reasons why people delay seeking medical advice, but uncertainty surrounding the diagnosis procedure can be another factor. If you’re apprehensive about seeing an audiologist, it may be helpful to know how they’ll go about assessing you for hearing loss. 

Having a hearing function test

The most common method of diagnosis is via a hearing function test. Prior to this, your audiologist may visually examine your ears using an otoscope, which does not cause any discomfort. Then, you’ll be asked to wear headphones and indicate whenever you hear a noise.

Your audiologist will use this information to chart your responses and gauge which noises you can hear, at what level. Once the test is complete, your audiologist will be able to determine whether you’re experiencing hearing loss and, if so, what type of hearing loss you have, as well as its severity. 

With this information, you’ll be able to move forward and access any treatment you need. You may be prescribed hearing aids to help improve your hearing function, for example. As you can see, having your hearing function tested is simple and straightforward, but it offers significant benefits. 

By using hearing devices to improve your hearing function, you can begin to enjoy the things you’ve been missing out on, banish any lingering feelings of shame or embarrassment and significantly improve your quality of life. To find out more, contact Quality Hearing Aid Center today at (248) 430-8791.