As social beings, we are all aware that good communication is essential to maintaining a healthy connection. When living a fuller, more meaningful life, we depend on our conversations with our friends, loved ones, and the wider world. To feel connected, we depend on the quality of our relationships with others, whether they be personal or professional.
Does our ability to communicate with others suffer when our hearing deteriorates? The answer, unfortunately, is yes. It affects everyone, and individuals from all walks of life are impacted. Aside from the person with hearing loss, their partners are the ones who suffer the most.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom – treatment for hearing loss has been shown to strengthen your relationships, which is excellent news!
Studies show the effect hearing loss has on relationships.
Hearing loss, along with diabetes and cancer, is one of the three most rapidly expanding public health concerns in the United States. Hearing aids are required by about 30 million people in the United States alone, but very few of them use them. Americans with hearing loss, according to ASHA data, have the most difficulty in their romantic connections (35 percent), followed by relationships with friends, family, and coworkers.
Even the smallest slices of communication, which we frequently take for granted, determine how intimate a relationship can be. According to a British survey of 1,500 persons with hearing loss who are married/in a relationship, both parties suffer since nuance and subtlety in tone are no longer detected. Two-thirds (69 percent) stated their hearing loss substantially limits their ability to participate in ordinary conversations with friends and family, causing 52 percent of those polled to feel ignored and left out in social situations. More than half of those polled said that better hearing would make their connections with others more natural and seamless.
A hearing impairment hampers communication.
Here are a few long-term and cumulative repercussions of hearing loss that a report published by the Action on Hearing Loss organization has highlighted for couples trying to navigate their way through it:
Both feel alone when the content and tone of their conversation diminishes. These are the subtle details that make couple contact special. On both sides, frustration turns to resentment. As they become more isolated from their former social circles, they grow lonely. fewer evenings spent with friends who live in the same house
Everyone interviewed, including the 22 married couples, acknowledged that their intimate communications and the small details that distinguished their communication style from others had deteriorated.
On a more positive side, the study indicated that when a couple is committed to maintaining their communication, the individual with hearing loss does better with hearing aids. Using hearing aids to improve communication is a win-win situation for all parties involved, and it makes sense to do so.
Benefits of hearing aids on relationships
A person with hearing loss who uses hearing aids can better understand what others are saying when they are communicating. People with hearing loss can communicate better when they can hear what the other person or people are saying better. As a result of hearing the conversation, the person with hearing loss feels less self-conscious, which encourages them to participate more actively in conversations and communication with others. By not asking others to repeat themselves, someone with hearing loss enhances the flow of communication and the quality of their relationships.
Hearing devices help people with and without hearing loss communicate more easily during conversations. Repetition is reduced, and understanding is easier to achieve, making communication more accessible and enjoyable for everyone. Relationships develop more when there is more positive communication, which benefits both the couple and hearing loss.
If you or a loved one is ready for better hearing, there’s no better time to give us a call! Please do not hesitate to contact us to take the next step towards better communication, which will improve your relationships with those you care about and, most importantly, better health.