You’re supposed to wear your hearing aids daily. But you’re also supposed to wash out your milk containers before you recycle them. We don’t always do what we’re supposed to. The same goes for hearing aids. Sometimes we forget to take them with us. You might even forget to wear it for more than a day.
That isn’t a really smart idea. Because when you don’t use your hearing aids numerous things occur and some things already happening get worse. And most of them, honestly, aren’t good.
Consequences of Forgetting to Wear Your Hearing Aids
There will be consequences of varying levels of intensity and severity, both to your health and social life, if you don’t wear your hearing aid. The effects and repercussions of failing to wear your hearing aids could include the following.
Your Level of Hearing Impairment Will Worsen
Hearing aids are impressive gadgets. They increase your ability to hear and help keep your auditory complex (the region of the brain that interprets sound) functioning efficiently.
If you “forget” to wear your hearing aids and, instead, turn up your TV to an even louder volume, you may be doing additional damage to your hearing. Even if you’re keeping the volumes under control, issues with your brain can result from the lack of sensory input. (It actually shrinks.) So you’ll most likely wind up needing more powerful hearing aids in the future if you fail to wear your current pair because your hearing will continue to get worse.
Social Engagement Will Become More Stressful (And Less Consistent)
You know those short interactions you have with the cashier as you’re checking out at the grocery store? Those conversations are pleasant. A nice little touch of humanity in a technology-driven world.
These day-to-day social interactions suddenly become really difficult when you don’t use your hearing aids. You repeatedly miss parts of the conversation and need to ask people to repeat what they said. Again and again. And that’s when the conversation becomes really awkward. That may not sound serious but each time a scenario like this happens, you will tend to withdraw socially more and more. And that can result in even more substantial problems.
Cognitive Decline And Hearing Aids
When you separate yourself socially, your brain gets much less exercise. Think about how invigorated (or exhausted) you can feel after a good conversation or an enjoyable evening dinner with your family. Certain cognitive functions can begin to decline or decline faster without this exercise. This could mean:
- Memory issues
- Balance troubles
- Declines in energy or productivity
But there’s more. Because hearing sound is vitally important to certain regions of your nervous system and brain. Without stimulation, certain nerves will start to weaken, and your auditory complex begins to atrophy. This can lead to an even more rapid cognitive decline (or, even in the best-case scenario, make adapting to your hearing aids even more challenging).
Your brain stays happy, stimulated, and active when you wear hearing aids.
Loss of Independence
Needing a little more help, as you get older, is not uncommon. Perhaps you hire a neighbor to mow your lawn or ask your son to swing by with supplies more often. If you aren’t wearing your hearing aid, you could be expediting the loss of independence that often comes with aging.
You can miss phone calls or lose parts of conversations with your neighbor when you don’t use your hearing aids. It’s possible that you will miss important alerts. Maybe you don’t hear your dog barking when there’s someone at the door or your cat meowing at 6 am when he needs food.
Is There Any Solution?
Wearing a hearing aid won’t solve all of life’s problems, regardless of how technologically innovative those little gadgets get. But many of the problems linked to failing to wear your hearing aid can be solved.
If you’re having problems with your hearing aids or if they’re uncomfortable, that’s one thing (and you should consult us about finding solutions to those particular issues).
But if you’re looking for reasons to refrain from using your hearing aids, if you’re just forgetting them in the nightstand drawer, it’s worth taking a little time to consider what could be gained by using them… and what could happen if you don’t wear your hearing aids.