Trips to the ER can cost you time off work, not to mention personal pain. What if you could minimize ER trips and significantly reduce your risk of depression, anxiety, and even dementia.
Using your hearing aid can be the difference between having an engaged healthy life and taking many trips to the ER, according to some new research.
This University of Michigan research gathered participants ranging from 65-85. Each had severe hearing loss. But out of all of those who participated, only 45% of them wore their hearing aids regularly.
This is on par with comparable studies which have revealed that only around 30% of people who have hearing aids actually use them.
Of the 585 individuals in the group who did use their hearing aids, 12 fewer people found themselves in the ER or non-elective hospital stay.
This might seem like a moderate number. But it’s statistically significant.
And there’s more. They also found that those who used their hearing aids spend, on average, one day fewer in the hospital. They were more likely to show up for regular appointments with their doctors, which probably reduced their time in ER.
How Can ER Visits be Reduced by Wearing Hearing Aids?
The first one is obvious. If an individual is keeping up with their health, they’re more likely to stay away from ER.
Also, individuals who use their hearing aids remain more socially involved. This can result in both a greater drive to show up for that doctor’s appointment and better access to services and assistance to get to appointments.
And driving is less dangerous when you can hear, so you will have more confidence if you are bringing yourself to your appointment.
Additionally, a U.S. study revealed that individuals with hearing loss who don’t use their hearing aid are twice as likely to be depressed. Health concerns related to lack of self care is commonly an outcome of depression.
The danger of falling and dementia are, as outlined by numerous studies, also decreased by wearing your hearing aids. As a person begins to lose their hearing, the corresponding part of the brain begins to decline from lack of use. With time, this can spread through the brain. The disorientation related to falls and symptoms of dementia are often the result.
Falls are one of the leading causes of death among those over 65, and the consequent hospitalizations last twice as long.
Hearing aids reduce visits to the ER for these reasons amongst others.
Why do so Many Individuals Avoid Wearing Hearing Aids?
There’s really no good reason.
Some don’t use them because they think that hearing aids make them appear older than they actually are. This notion remains in spite of the fact that around 25% of people over 65 have substantial hearing loss, and 50% of those 75 and older have it. Hearing loss is not uncommon. It happens to lots of people. Plus, hearing loss is on the rise even among 20-year-olds thanks to earbuds and the increase in noise pollution.
Ironically, frequently asking people to repeat themselves often makes a person appear much older than they are.
Some individuals cite the costs of hearing aids. However, financing is available for hearing aids and costs have come down in the last few years.
Some individuals don’t like how hearing aids sound. This can often be corrected by simply consulting your hearing specialist to learn how to more effectively use your hearing aid in various settings. Hearing aids can require several fittings before they are just right.
If something is preventing you from using your hearing aid, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your hearing specialist.