The Costs of Untreated Hearing Loss
Our brains need accurate signals. Confused signals lead to a confused and inefficient brain. A compromised brain endangers all of the body’s functions. Speaking purely medically — leaving out all the social costs which are severe — people with untreated hearing loss spend 25% to 33% more per year on health costs than their peers who still hear well. This is just health-care costs. Working adults with untreated hearing loss also make an average of $12,000 less per year.
These high health costs and low earning potentials are partially fueled by the poor psycho/social conditions faced by the Hearing Impaired. Untreated loss often leads to loneliness and feelings of rejection. Family relationships are strained, friends are few, and social skills become rusty.
The resultant affective disorders together with a brain starved for accurate signaling result in an amazing number of co-morbidities including heart disease, memory loss, Alzheimer’s, paranoia, tinnitus, balance problems, and exacerbated immunodeficiencies.
If you find these to be surprising and valuable insights you are not alone. There is a great need for Hearing Health education. I enjoy meeting this need and frequently give presentations to staffs, clubs and organizations. While my talks focus on serious topics like the costs of untreated hearing loss, I try to ensure that we always have lots of fun; give-aways are abundant, jokes and cartoons are shared and lots of chocolate gets eaten. If your organization ever hosts educational speakers, I would be happy to speak with you further.