It is not uncommon for people with hearing loss to experience depression. Hearing loss can affect our ability to socialize and communicate, which can lead to feelings of loneliness and frustration. This post goes into more detail about the link between hearing loss and depression.
How Hearing Loss Affects Mental Health
Hearing loss can make it hard to hear what other people are saying. Some of the situations that people with hearing loss commonly experience include:
- Not being able to hear people voices when there is a lot of background noise.
- Not being able to hear people on the phone.
- Not being able to keep up with fast-paced conversations.
Without being able to hear what other people are saying, it can become difficult to contribute to conversations. This can lead to various mental health problems such as:
Social events can become challenging with hearing loss. Some people withdraw themselves from social situations because of how taxing and awkward they can be.
Some people with hearing loss can experience paranoia. You may assume that people are talking to you or talking about you when they are not. You may also worry about not being able to hear alarms or calls for help.
Frustration with not being able to hear conversations may lead to anger at oneself. You may even take out your anger on other people. To others, your outbursts may seem sudden and irrational.
How This Leads To Depression
All of this anxiety, paranoia and frustration can ultimately make people depressed. It can become very easy to feel that your hearing loss is holding you back from living your life to its full. You may feel that you cannot talk to people and this could lead to feelings of loneliness and low self-esteem.
Choose Suitable Environments To Socialize
Avoid meeting friends or family members in places with lots of background noise. Instead of catching up over lunch in a busy restaurant, consider meeting at your home where you may be able to minimize background noise. You can still go out to noisy places, but you plan the bulk of your social activities in more quiet environments.
Communicate Your Feelings
It’s important to communicate how you are feeling to those closest to you. Tell your loved ones if you are anxious about going to a party or if you are frustrated because you weren’t able to hear someone on the phone. Don’t keep these feelings pent up inside – they will inevitably lead to an outburst, or they could end up chipping away at you.
Treat It With Humor
If you have to constantly ask people to repeat themselves, try to treat the situation with humor rather than letting yourself get frustrated or embarrassed. Humor can often help to diffuse situations that might otherwise be annoying or awkward.
Get A Hearing Aid
One of the best things you can do to prevent hearing loss causing depression is to treat the hearing loss itself. Hearing aids are one of the simplest and most effective ways to treat hearing loss. They can help to drastically improve hearing quality, making it easier to hear what people are saying and participate in conversations.
You can buy a hearing aid from a hearing clinic. An audiologist can carry out a hearing test to determine the extent of your hearing loss. From here, you’ll be assigned a prescription and will be advised as to which hearing aid to buy. There are lots of different styles of hearing aid to choose from – an audiologist will be able to talk you through these different styles and how to use them.
Is it Time You Booked an Appointment to Get a Hearing Aid?
The Hearing Spa can help to assess your hearing loss and help you select the best hearing aid. We can show you exactly how to use your hearing aid and how to maintain it to keep it in good condition. Feel free to ask us any questions you may have. To book an appointment, contact us today at our Sarasota clinic or our West Bradenton clinic.