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Living with untreated hearing loss affects far more than your ability to hear. Learn about the far-reaching consequences of leaving your hearing challenges untreated, and take action today by booking a complimentary hearing assessment.*

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  • 01-your-mental-sharpness-suffers
    1. Your mental sharpness may suffer

    When you have difficulty hearing what’s going on around you, your mental sharpness can suffer. This is due to a reduction of stimulation to the brain, which may impair its ability to process sound and recognize speech. That's why it's important to identify hearing loss early so it can be treated as soon as possible.

    How’s your hearing? Take our online hearing test to get an indication of how well you hear.

  • 02-your-risk-of-dementia-increases
    2. Your risk of dementia may increase

    Living with even a mild case of hearing loss can double your risk of developing dementia. The more severe the case, the greater the risk of cognitive decline. A moderate case of hearing loss, for example, triples your risk. With a severe case of hearing loss, you’re up to five times more likely to develop dementia. Want to read more information about the link between hearing loss and dementia? We even offer a downloadable article on addressing hearing loss and dementia.

    Dementia and hearing loss

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  • 03-your-memory-can-be-impaired
    3. Hearing loss may impact your memory

    Do you find it hard to remember what you’ve just heard? It can be difficult to comprehend and remember what’s being said when it’s a struggle to hear conversations or information in the first place. This is because the extra cognitive resources required to listen reduce the resources available for memory and comprehension.

  • 04-conversations-are-not-as-fun
    4. Conversations are not as fun

    As your hearing worsens, it becomes more challenging to follow everyday conversations. You may need to ask people to repeat themselves frequently, or sit closer to people so you can read their lips to understand. You may even nod and pretend to understand what is being said. Does this sound familiar? Jokes aren't as funny if you miss the punchline.

  • 05-your-social-life-may-suffer
    5. Your social life may suffer

    You may find it harder to keep in touch with your circle of friends when you have difficulty hearing.  It may be particularly noticeable in certain settings, such as larger gatherings or dinner parties. As a result, you may find yourself withdrawing from certain social events or declining invitations. In fact, research shows that seniors with untreated hearing loss are 20-24% less likely to participate in social activities.

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  • 06-you-may-feel-anxious
    6. You may feel anxious

    As your hearing worsens, you may find it difficult to decipher and locate sounds around you. This may lead you to feel more insecure about your surroundings. Have you been feeling less secure lately? Tinnitus is also linked to anxiety.7

  • 07-it-can-be-exhausting
    7. Communication can be exhausting

    When it’s difficult to hear, communication can be exhausting. This is because you must dig deeper into your cognitive reserves to understand. This can be particularly taxing at social events, in restaurants or in crowds where you may need to concentrate even harder to decipher what people say to you.

  • 08-it-can-impact-your-income
    8. Hearing loss may impact your income

    According to a study by The Better Hearing Institute, untreated hearing loss can impact your earning potential. It can account for up to $30,000 in lost income annually,8 and can impact your performance at work. When you don't hear clearly, you risk missing key information in meetings or directives from supervisors.

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Sources:

1. Deal JA, Betz J, Yaffe K, et al, for the Health ABC Study Group. Hearing impairment and incident dementia and cognitive decline in older adults: the Health ABC Study J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2016; published online April 12. DOI:10.1093/gerona/glw069. 66

2. Lin FR, Metter EJ, O’Brien RJ, Resnick SM, Zonderman AB, Ferrucci L. Hearing loss and incident dementia. Arch Neurol 2011; 68: 214–20. 67

3. Gallacher J, Ilubaera V, Ben-Shlomo Y, et al. Auditory threshold, phonologic demand, and incident dementia. Neurology 2012; 79: 1583–90.

4. Pichora-Fuller MK. (2008a) quoted in Convention News, “Celebrating 20 Years, AAA is Hear to Stay” from: Advance for Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists. By Jason Mosheim, speech-languagepathology-audiology.advance.web.com/editorial.

5. The National Council on Aging, The Consequences of Untreated Hearing Loss in Older Persons, May 1999. https://www.ncoa.org/wp-content/uploads/NCOA-Study-1999.pdf

6. Beck DL, Clark, JL. Audition matters more as cognition declines and cognition matters more as audition declines. Audiology To-day. 2009;(3):48-59.

7. Packer, Lisa. "Research shows severity of tinnitus is related to emotional processing." Healthy Hearing. Accessed April 16, 2019.

8. Jung D, Bhattacharyya N. Association of hearing loss with decreased employment and income among adults in the United States. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 2012;121(12):771–775. [PubMed]