Hearing aids are supposed to be used daily. But you’re also supposed to wash out your milk jugs before you recycle them. We don’t always do what we’re supposed to. It’s the same for hearing aids. Occasionally we forget to bring them with us. You might even forget to wear it for more than a day.
That isn’t a very good idea. Because when you don’t use your hearing aids numerous things happen and some things already happening get worse. And the majority of them, to be honest, aren’t very good.
Effects And Repercussions of Going Without Hearing Aids
There will be consequences of varying levels of intensity and severity, both to your health and social life, if you don’t use your hearing aid. Here are a few of those effects and consequences.
Your Hearing Will Continue to Diminish
Hearing aids are remarkable devices. Not only do they allow you to hear sounds that you normally wouldn’t have, but they also keep your auditory complex working efficiently (that’s the region of your brain responsible for interpreting sounds).
If you “forget” to wear your hearing aids and, instead, crank up your TV to an even louder volume, you could be doing additional damage to your hearing. Even if you aren’t increasing the volume, the missing sensory input leads to issues with your brain. (It actually shrinks.) So if you don’t use your hearing aids, your hearing will most likely continue to get worse (so you’ll need even more powerful hearing aids before long).
It Will Become More Challenging to Engage Socially
You know when you go to the market and you get into a short discussion with the cashier? They’re pleasant, we think. In a world of technology, these little chats are a touch of humanity.
When you don’t use your hearing aids, these simple social connections can suddenly be much more challenging. You need to ask the cashier to repeat himself. Again and again. And that’s when the conversation becomes really uncomfortable. Maybe that sounds trivial, but every bit you withdraw into yourself makes it that much easier for you to totally seclude yourself socially. And that can lead to even more substantial issues.
Hearing Aids And Cognitive Decline
When you seclude 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. Without that exercise, certain cognitive processes can start to decline (or decline faster). This could mean:
- Balance troubles
- Declines in productivity or energy
- Memory issues
But there’s more. Because hearing sound is vitally important to certain parts of your nervous system and brain. Without stimulation, certain nerves will start to weaken, and your auditory complex starts 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 difficult).
Your brain remains happy, stimulated, and active when you wear hearing aids.
Loss of Independence
Needing a bit more help, as you get older, is not abnormal. Maybe you ask a family member to go shopping for you or a neighbor to do some yard work. You are probably speeding up your loss of independence if you’re not wearing your hearing aids.
You can miss phone calls or lose parts of conversations with your neighbor when you don’t wear your hearing aids. You could miss important weather alerts. Perhaps you don’t hear your cat meowing for food at night or your dog barking at someone knocking on your door.
Is There Any Solution?
Using a hearing aid won’t solve all of life’s issues, no matter how technologically innovative those little devices get. But they will solve a lot of the problems connected with not wearing your hearing aids.
You should come see us for assistance if you’re having difficulty with your hearing aids or if they’re uncomfortable.
But if you’re looking for reasons to avoid wearing your hearing aids, if you’re just leaving them in the nightstand drawer, it’s worth taking a little time to reflect on what may be gained by using them… and what could happen if you don’t use your hearing aids.