Hearing aids have advanced significantly, yet many people still don’t wear them all the time. While there are many reasons people wear hearing aids, there are also many reasons they won’t wear them: stigma, misdiagnosis, insurance constraints, lack of understanding, and difficulty using the device. Even when patients know that they need hearing aids and want to wear them, more than half never do.
Let’s explain these in detail.
At the heart of the hearing aid problem is the stigma of wearing them. As long as a person wears hearing aids, they are considered someone with a hearing problem. In a world that does not acknowledge or display hearing loss, seeing is believing. A person who wears hearing aids will never “hear” like a person without a hearing loss. If a person has learned to “fake it” to get by, wearing hearing aids may take them out of the comfort zone of doing just fine without them.
Not only do people with hearing loss have to deal with their self-concept of wearing hearing aids, but they also have to deal with the judgments other people make when they wear the devices.
In recent years, the medical community has recognized the hearing loss issues associated with diabetes and heart disease. Still, many people are misdiagnosed and are never told they have hearing loss. People who have had head trauma often experience hearing loss. Some people experience hearing loss simply because they have lived long enough. In many cases, hearing loss is experienced by people who delay getting tested. They are actually in the early or pre-diagnosis stages but will never know it because they never get tested.
3. Insurance Coverage
Most insurance policies do not cover the cost of hearing aids, especially for those with Medicare. In most cases, Medicare may only cover hearing exams.
4. Lack of Understanding
There is a lot of misunderstanding about hearing aids. Many people do not know how much practice is required to “get the hang of” hearing aids or what kind of hearing loss is required to warrant wearing them. They also don’t understand that hearing aids are designed to be worn 24/7. Hearing aids improve the wearer’s quality of life through:
- Being able to understand speech better, including in noisy places
- Better conversations with family, friends, and colleagues
- Increased safety, especially in the car
- Making telephone calls less taxing
- Better understanding in group situations
- Improved sleep
- Improved ability to hear environmental sounds
- Improved ability to hear TV and radio
5. Difficult to Use
New hearing aid styles feature sleek designs that can be adjusted through smartphones. However, some users often struggle to use it. With that, they give up and put the hearing aids in a safe place out of sight. Thankfully, most hearing aid companies can help customers fix these problems, either by phone or an online chat. They can also tell them whether they need help adjusting their devices, and offer targeted instruction on things like changing their batteries or properly inserting the devices in their ears.
You’ve heard this before, but we’ll say it again: hearing aids can lead to a better quality of life for the hearing impaired. And, as you can see from this comprehensive list, there are a variety of factors that can contribute to someone not wearing their hearing aid. If you find any of your reasons for not wearing one here, talk to your health care provider so you can be properly guided.
You deserve the best hearing care solutions in Lexington, MA. Hear More Associates is the most trusted hearing care specialists throughout Lexington and Greater Boston, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. Contact us!