Hearing aids are meant to be used daily. But you’re also supposed to wash out your milk containers before recycling them. Occasionally, we don’t do the things we’re supposed to. The same goes for hearing aids. Occasionally we forget to take them with us. You might even forget to use it for more than one day.
That isn’t a really good idea. Because when you don’t use your hearing aids numerous things occur and some things already happening get worse. And the majority of them, to be honest, aren’t very good.
Consequences of Failing to Wear Your Hearing Aids
There will be consequences of varying levels of intensity and severity, both to your health and social life, if you fail to use your hearing aid. Here are a few of those effects and repercussions.
Your Hearing Will Keep Diminishing
Hearing aids are remarkable devices. They increase your ability to hear and help keep your auditory complex (the region of the brain that interprets sound) working efficiently.
If you “forget” to use your hearing aids and, instead, turn up your TV to an even louder volume, you might be doing additional damage to your hearing. Even if you’re keeping the volumes in check, problems with your brain can result from the lack of sensory stimuli. (It actually shrinks.) So you will most likely end up needing more powerful hearing aids in the future if you fail to wear your current pair because your hearing will keep getting worse.
Social Interactions Will Become More Difficult (And Less Consistent)
You know those short interactions you have with the cashier as you’re checking out at the grocery store? They’re enjoyable, we think. A nice little bit of humanity in a technological world.
These normal social connections suddenly become very difficult when you don’t wear your hearing aids. You have to ask the cashier to repeat what they said. Again and again. And once that happens, the conversation just quickly becomes strained. That may not sound serious but every time a scenario like this happens, you will tend to disengage socially more and more. And that can cause even more substantial problems.
Hearing Aids And Cognitive Decline
When you separate yourself socially, your brain gets a lot less exercise. Think about how revitalized (or exhausted) you can feel after a good chat or a pleasant evening dinner with your family. Without that exercise, particular cognitive processes can begin to decline (or decline faster). This could mean:
- Balance troubles
- Declines in productivity or energy
- Memory problems
But there’s more. Because hearing sound is vitally essential to certain regions of your brain and nervous system. Your auditory complex starts to atrophy when certain nerves begin to weaken from lack of stimulation. This can lead to an even more accelerated mental decline (or, even in the best-case scenario, make adjusting to your hearing aids even harder).
Your brain stays happy, stimulated, and engaged when you wear hearing aids.
Losing The Ability to be Independent
Needing a little more help, as you age, is not abnormal. Perhaps you get a family member to go to the store for you or a neighbor to do some yard work. If you aren’t wearing your hearing aid, you could be expediting the loss of independence that frequently comes with aging.
When you don’t use your hearing aids, it can quickly become more difficult to answer the phone or have a conversation with your neighbor. You might miss important weather alerts. Maybe you fail to hear your dog barking when there’s someone at the door or your cat meowing in the morning when he needs food.
Is There Any Solution?
No matter how technologically sophisticated hearing aids get, they won’t resolve all of life’s issues. But many of the problems connected to failing to use your hearing aid can be solved.
If you’re having issues with your hearing aids or if they’re not comfortable, that’s one thing (and you should speak with us about getting solutions to those specific issues).
It’s worth taking a little time to think about what the consequences will be if you avoid using your hearing aids and also what the benefits of using them may be.