Having to go to the ER can be financially and personally costly. What if you could prevent ER trips and substantially decrease your chances of depression, anxiety, and even cognitive decline.
Wearing your hearing aid can be the difference between having an active healthy life and taking many trips to the ER, according to some new studies.
This University of Michigan study assembled participants ranging from 65-85. Serious hearing loss was a widespread problem between them. But out of all of those people who participated, only 45% of them used their hearing aids regularly.
This is in agreement with comparable studies which have found that only about 30% of individuals who have hearing aids actually wear them.
Of the 585 individuals in the hearing aid group, 12 fewer people ended up in the ER or non-elective hospital stay.
This might not seem like a very big number. But statistically, this is substantial.
And there’s more. They also found that those who wore their hearing aids spend, on average, one fewer day in the hospital. Their time at the ER was probably reduced because they were more likely to keep their regular doctor’s appointments.
How Can Hearing Aids Reduce The Need For ER Visits?
The first one is obvious. If a person is keeping up with their health, they’re more likely to stay out of ER.
Also, people who wear their hearing aids remain more socially engaged. When a person is socially connected they are usually more motivated to keep their appointments and also have more help from friends and family getting to the doctor.
For those driving themselves, it means that they can drive more safely with less anxiety about what they can’t hear.
Additionally, a U.S. study revealed that people with hearing loss who don’t use their hearing aid are twice as likely to be depressed. Health problems linked to lack of self care is commonly an outcome of depression.
The third thing is, various studies have found that using your hearing aid can reduce fall risk and dementia. The part of the brain that’s used for hearing will begin to decline from lack of use as hearing declines. The rest of the brain is eventually impacted. The disorientation associated with falls and symptoms of dementia are often the result.
Falls are one of the leading causes of death among people over 65, and the resulting hospitalizations last twice as long.
These are just a few of the reasons that hearing aids help decrease trips to the ER.
So Why is Wearing Hearing Aids Something That so Many People Neglect?
It’s difficult to come up with a valid excuse.
Some people don’t use them because they think that hearing aids make them seem older than they are. 25% of individuals over 65 and 50% of people above the age of 75 have hearing loss and yet this notion of looking old with hearing aids persists. Hearing loss isn’t uncommon. It’s common. Plus, hearing loss is increasing even among 20-year-olds because of earbuds and the increase in noise pollution.
Ironically, frequently asking people to repeat what they said often makes a person appear a lot older than they are.
Price is often mentioned as a concern. However, financing is available for hearing aids and prices have come down in the last few years.
Lastly, some don’t enjoy the hearing experience with their hearing aid. If this is a problem for you, your hearing specialist can help you understand what settings work best in different circumstances. Hearing aids don’t always fit and sound optimal on the first fitting and sometimes require a number of tries.
Schedule an appointment with your hearing specialist so we can help you feel more secure wearing your hearing aids.