Man talking to grocery cashier and laughing because he hears her.

Hearing aids are supposed to be worn daily. But before you recycle your milk jugs, you’re supposed to rinse them out too. Sometimes, we don’t do the things we’re supposed to. So yeah, you forget to take your hearing aids out of the nightstand drawer now and then. You might even forget to wear it for more than one day.

That’s not great. Because when you don’t wear your hearing aids a number of things occur and some things already developing get worse. And, honestly, most of them are rather bad.

Effects And Repercussions of Going Without Hearing Aids

Much of what occurs when you don’t wear your hearing aids will impact both your hearing health and your social life, each with varying levels of severity and intensity. The effects and repercussions of failing to wear your hearing aids could include the following.

Your Hearing Will Continue to Diminish

Hearing aids are amazing gadgets. Not only do they allow you to hear sounds that you otherwise wouldn’t have, but they also keep your auditory complex running efficiently (that’s the part of your brain responsible for interpreting sounds).

If you “forget” to wear your hearing aids and, instead, crank up your TV to an even higher volume, you may be doing further damage to your hearing. Even if you aren’t raising the volume, the missing sensory input results in issues with your brain. (It actually shrinks.) So you’ll probably wind up needing more powerful hearing aids in the future if you fail to use your current pair because your hearing will keep getting worse.

It Will Become More Challenging to Interact Socially

You know when you go to the store and you get into a short discussion with the cashier? They’re pleasant, we think. A nice little bit of humanity in a technological world.

These everyday social connections suddenly become really hard when you don’t wear your hearing aids. You have to ask the cashier to repeat himself. Over and over. And that’s when the conversation becomes really uncomfortable. Perhaps that sounds trivial, but every bit you retreat into yourself makes it that much easier for you to entirely separate yourself socially. And that can result in even bigger problems.

Hearing Aids And Mental Decline

When you separate yourself socially, your brain gets a lot less exercise. After you have a pleasant conversation with your family, think about how revitalized (or exhausted) you can feel. Without that exercise, particular cognitive processes can begin to decline (or decline faster). This could mean:

  • Depression
  • Balance troubles
  • Declines in productivity or energy
  • Memory issues

But that’s not all. Because there are particular parts of your brain and nervous system that need to hear sounds. Your auditory complex begins to atrophy when certain nerves begin to weaken from lack of stimulation. This can cause an even more rapid cognitive decline (or, even in the best-case scenario, make adjusting to your hearing aids even more challenging).

Your brain remains happy, stimulated, and engaged when you use hearing aids.

Losing The Ability to be Independent

Needing a little more help, as you get older, is not uncommon. Maybe you get a neighbor to mow your lawn or ask your son to swing by with groceries more often. If you aren’t using your hearing aid, you could be expediting the loss of independence that frequently comes with aging.

You can miss phone calls or lose parts of conversations with your neighbor when you don’t wear your hearing aids. You may miss important weather alerts. Maybe you don’t hear your cat meowing for food at night or your dog barking at someone ringing your doorbell.

What’s The Solution?

No matter how technologically advanced hearing aids get, they won’t solve all of life’s issues. But many of the problems linked to failing to use your hearing aid can be resolved.

You should come see us for assistance if you’re having problems with your hearing aids or if they are not comfortable.

But if you’re looking for reasons to refrain from wearing your hearing aids, if you’re just forgetting them in the nightstand drawer, it’s worth taking some time to think about what could be gained by wearing them… and what might happen if you don’t use your hearing aids.

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References

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/otolaryngology/specialty_areas/hearing/faq.html
https://www.webmd.com/brain/news/20140128/hearing-loss-tied-to-faster-brain-shrinkage-with-age
https://www.apa.org/monitor/2019/05/ce-corner-isolation

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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