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Hearing loss and Depression
Depressed? Have your hearing checked-there could be a connection.
Hearing is an easy thing to take for granted. Occasionally we might miss a few words, but in general we move around effortlessly in everyday life, talking to one another, chatting over the phone or listening to the TV, without paying it a second thought.
However, things are not nearly as easy with a hearing loss. When hearing loss occurs, a simple thing like following a conversation in a restaurant or hearing the doorbell or telephone can become a real issue. This can lead to stress, fatigue and social isolation. And social isolation in turn leads to depression, especially in older adults. But it wasn’t until recently that researchers were able to show that it was more of a problem than previously thought. Hence it stands to reason that depression and hearing loss go hand-in-hand.
Don’t suffer in silence
If you think you could have a problem with your hearing, it’s a good idea to sit down and have an honest conversation with your family and friends. Let them know how you’re finding things and ask whether they’ve noticed any changes.
Support from trusted people can really help you as you start to think about what’s happening to your hearing and how it might affect you. If the people you chat to have hearing loss themselves, they can share their own experiences. And if they don’t, then it can still helpful to talk about what actions might be best for you. Sometimes it’s the simplest things that help the most.
Take an action
Though prevalent, it is possible to minimize the risk of depression related to hearing loss. First and foremost, if you suspect hearing loss, seek the care of a hearing healthcare professional as early as possible. Studies show that those who seek treatment for hearing loss early greatly reduce their risk of depression. After seeking treatment, a well-planned adjustment period is necessary for new hearing aids; a good audiological rehabilitation program will help you adjust to new sounds gradually.
If it does sound familiar, you may benefit from a diagnostic ear and hearing assessment and professional advice from our very experienced audiologist Mini Gupta. Please feel free to call us on 0402476713 if you want to have a quick chat about your ear and hearing.