You’re supposed to use your hearing aids daily. But before you recycle your milk containers, you’re supposed to wash them out too. Occasionally, we don’t do the things we’re supposed to. The same goes for hearing aids. Sometimes we forget to take them with us. Perhaps you even go a day, or a week, or possibly a few weeks (a month?) without wearing your hearing aids.
That isn’t a really good idea. Because there are several things that happen (or continue to happen) when you don’t wear your hearing aids. And most of them, to be honest, aren’t very good.
Effects And Repercussions of Not Using Your Hearing Aids
There will be repercussions of varying levels of intensity and severity, both to your health and social life, if you fail to wear your hearing aid. The effects and consequences of failing to use your hearing aids could include the following.
Your Hearing Will Continue to Diminish
Hearing aids are impressive devices. Not only do they let you 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).
You could damage your hearing even more if, instead of using your hearing aids, you begin turning up the volume on your devices even louder than they already are. 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 wear your hearing aids, your hearing will likely continue to get worse (which means you’ll need even more powerful hearing aids in the near future).
Social Engagement Will Become More Difficult (And Less Consistent)
You know when you go to the market and you get into a short conversation with the cashier? They’re pleasant, we think. A nice little touch of humanity in a technological world.
When you don’t use your hearing aids, these simple social connections can suddenly be much more challenging. You repeatedly miss parts of the conversation and need to ask people to repeat what they said. Again and again. And after that, the conversation just quickly falls apart. That may not sound serious but every time a situation like this happens, you will tend to retreat socially more and more. And that can result in even bigger issues.
Hearing Aids And Cognitive Decline
Your brain doesn’t get nearly as much exercise when you isolate yourself. Think about how invigorated (or exhausted) you can feel after a good conversation or a pleasant evening meal with your family. Certain cognitive functions can begin to decline or decline faster without this exercise. This could mean:
- Declines in energy or productivity
- Memory problems
- Balance issues
But that’s not all. Because hearing sound is vitally essential to certain regions of your brain and nervous system. Without stimulation, certain nerves will begin to weaken, and your auditory complex begins to atrophy. This can make it harder to get used to your new hearing aids and in the worst case accelerate the mental decline.
Your brain remains happy, stimulated, and active when you use hearing aids.
Losing The Ability to be Independent
It’s not uncommon, as you age, to require a little more help. Maybe you get a family member to go to the store for you or a neighbor to do some yard work. If you aren’t using your hearing aid, you could be speeding up the loss of independence that frequently accompanies aging.
You can miss phone calls or fail to hear 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 cat meowing at night for food or your dog barking at someone ringing your doorbell.
What’s The Solution?
No matter how technologically advanced hearing aids become, they won’t solve all of life’s problems. But they will solve many issues connected with not using your hearing aids.
You need to come see us for assistance if you’re having problems with your hearing aids or if they are uncomfortable.
It’s worth taking some time to consider what the repercussions will be if you avoid using your hearing aids and also what the advantages of using them might be.