Untreated hearing loss leads to increased visits to the emergency room.

Having to visit the ER can be financially and personally costly. What if you could lessen your chances of falls, accidents, anxiety, depression, and even dementia while also eliminating trips to the ER.

Using your hearing aid can be the difference between having an engaged healthy life and taking lots of trips to the ER, according to some new research.

The Research

Participants from 65 to 85 participated in a University of Michigan study. Each had extreme hearing loss. But out of all of those people who took part, only 45% of them wore their hearing aids on a regular basis.

This is on par with similar studies which have shown that only about 30% of individuals who have hearing aids actually use them.

12 fewer, of the 585 individuals who did wear their hearing aid, had Er visits or unplanned hospitalizations.

This may seem like a small number. But statistically, this is substantial.

And that’s not all. They also discovered that one day fewer, on average, was spent in the hospital for those who wore their hearing aids. Their time at the ER was probably reduced because they were more likely to show up for their regular doctor’s appointments.

How Can ER Visits be Decreased by Wearing Hearing Aids?

First for the obvious one. If an individual is staying on top of their health, they’re more likely to stay away from ER.

Also, people who use their hearing aids stay more socially engaged. This can bring about both a stronger drive to show up for that doctor’s appointment and better access to services and assistance to get to appointments.

For those driving themselves, it means that they will be able to drive more safely with less stress about what they can’t hear.

One study done in the U.S. revealed that depression is two times as likely in people who don’t use their hearing aid. Depression can result in a lack of self-care, which can lead to health problems.

The third thing is, several studies have found that using your hearing aid can reduce the risk of falling and dementia. The region of the brain that’s responsible for hearing will start to decline from lack of use as hearing declines. With time, this can extend through the brain. As this happens, people commonly experience dementia symptoms and the disorientation and lack of balance connected with falls.

Falls are one of the leading causes of death among those over 65, and the resulting hospital stays last twice as long.

Hearing aids minimize visits to the ER for these reasons amongst others.

So Why is Wearing Hearing Aids Something That so Many Individuals Neglect?

It’s difficult to come up with a legitimate excuse.

Some don’t wear them because they think that hearing aids make them appear older than they are. This notion remains despite the fact that about 25% of people over 65 have significant hearing loss, and 50% of those 75 and older have it. Hearing impairment isn’t rare. It’s common. And thanks to the increase in noise pollution and earbud usage, hearing loss is on the rise among people in their twenties.

It’s ironic that when someone is always asking people what they said it actually makes them seem older.

Some people reference the price of hearing aids. However, hearing aids have become more affordable in just the past few years, and there are financing options available.

Some individuals don’t like the way hearing aids sound. In this case, your hearing specialist can help you recognize what settings work best in different circumstances. Hearing aids don’t always fit and sound perfect on the first fitting and sometimes need several tries.

If something is preventing you from wearing your hearing aid, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your hearing specialist.

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