You’re supposed to use your hearing aids daily. But you’re also supposed to rinse out your milk jugs before you recycle them. We don’t always do what we’re supposed to. So yeah, you forget to take your hearing aids out of the nightstand drawer now and then. Perhaps you even go a day, or a week, or possibly a few weeks (a month?) without wearing your hearing aids.
That’s not good. Because when you don’t use your hearing aids a number of things happen and some things already happening get worse. And, honestly, the majority of them are rather negative.
Effects And Consequences of Going Without Hearing Aids
Much of what occurs when you fail to wear your hearing aids will affect both your hearing health and your social life, each with varying degrees of severity and intensity. The effects and repercussions of neglecting to wear your hearing aids could include the following.
Your Hearing Will Continue to Diminish
Hearing aids are amazing gadgets. They increase your ability to hear and help keep your auditory complex (the region of the brain that interprets sound) functioning efficiently.
If you “forget” to use your hearing aids and, instead, turn up your TV to an even higher volume, you may be doing further damage to your hearing. Even if you’re keeping the volumes under control, problems with your brain can result from missing sensory stimuli. (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).
Social Interactions Will Become More Stressful (And Less Frequent)
You know when you go to the store and you get into a short conversation with the cashier? They’re enjoyable, we think. In a world dominated by technology, these little chats are a touch of humanity.
When you don’t wear your hearing aids, these basic social connections can quickly become much more challenging. You regularly 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. Perhaps that sounds trivial, but every bit you withdraw into yourself makes it that much easier for you to entirely seclude yourself socially. And that can result in even more substantial issues.
Mental Decline And Hearing Aids
Your brain doesn’t get close to as much exercise when you isolate yourself. After you have a nice conversation with your family, think about how revitalized (or exhausted) you can feel. Certain cognitive functions can begin to decline or decline faster without this exercise. This could mean:
- Memory issues
- Declines in energy or productivity
- Balance issues
But that’s not all. Because hearing sound is vitally essential to certain regions of your nervous system and brain. Without stimulation, certain nerves will start to weaken, and your auditory complex begins to atrophy. This can result in an even more accelerated mental decline (or, even in the best-case scenario, make adapting to your hearing aids even harder).
Hearing aids keep your brain engaged, stimulated, and happy (more or less).
Losing The Ability to be Independent
Needing a little more help, as you age, is not abnormal. 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 wearing your hearing aid, you could be speeding up the loss of independence that frequently comes with aging.
When you don’t use your hearing aids, it can rapidly become more difficult to answer the phone or talk with your neighbor. You could miss important weather alerts. Perhaps you fail to hear your dog barking when there’s somebody at the door or your cat meowing at 6 am when he needs food.
What’s The Solution?
No matter how technologically sophisticated hearing aids get, they won’t resolve all of life’s problems. But many of the issues connected to failing to wear your hearing aid can be resolved.
You need to come see us for help if you’re having difficulty with your hearing aids or if they are uncomfortable.
But if you’re looking for reasons to avoid using your hearing aids, if you’re just forgetting them in the nightstand drawer, it’s worth taking a little time to consider what may be gained by using them… and what might happen if you don’t use your hearing aids.