Despite hearing loss being one of the most common disabilities facing America today, it is often misunderstood. This is because it is an invisible illness that cannot be seen. In response, many misconceptions and misunderstandings arise surrounding hearing loss. Some of them are stereotypes but others are just incorrect assumptions.
It is important to differentiate between the misconceptions and the truth so that we can start to remove the stigma that surrounds hearing loss. Here are the top misconceptions our audiologists hear:
1. Only older individuals can have hearing loss
Although it is true that individuals 80 years and older have the greatest amount of hearing loss, no matter which hearing specialist in Omaha you visit, they will all tell you the same thing – hearing loss can happen at any age! While hearing loss has been stereotyped into being a condition that only older people experience, the truth is about 40 million adults in the U.S. ages 20-69 have noise-induced hearing loss.
2. If you can hear some sounds, you don’t need hearing aids
Without any type of treatment plan or intervention, hearing loss will only continue to get worse over time. So even if you are only beginning to notice mild hearing loss symptoms, it is important to visit a hearing specialist in Omaha right away! A hearing aid is designed to help your brain process sounds again, and the more sounds you lose out on, the harder it is to treat.
3. Everyone with hearing loss knows sign language
Hearing loss can span a wide spectrum from mild to completely deaf. American Sign Language is a very complex language with its own set of rules and grammar, and not every single person with hearing loss knows it. The same can be said for reading lips. While many people with a hearing impairment will use visual cues to help them process, and like to face the person they are speaking to, this is not a universal truth.
4. Hearing loss may be inconvenient but it doesn't affect health
Unfortunately, hearing loss has been linked to a lot of different diseases. Hearing loss has been shown to increase a person’s risk of developing dementia and also developing balance problems. By seeking treatment for any hearing loss, people can improve their mood and memory.
5. Increasing the volume of things will fix hearing loss
While it is true that increasing the volume of things can help, there comes a point where louder volumes will distort the clarity of the sound. This means that someone will be able to hear the words, but not understand them. Speaking loudly and over pronouncing words can be more confusing than helpful. Louder volumes can also further damage hearing loss and make conditions worse. There are other options someone with hearing loss can turn to besides increasing the volume to compensate for the loss of sounds.
6. I only need one hearing aid
With hearing loss, people can tend to favor one ear over the other, giving them the impression that they are only experiencing hearing loss in one ear. The majority of individuals need hearing aids for both ears. Getting a hearing test performed by an audiologist and hearing specialist in Omaha can best determine your level of hearing loss in both ears and the appropriate solution to follow.
Our audiologists at Active Hearing Health can help get rid of all your misconceptions about hearing loss and answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to gain more information or make an appointment.