Social distancing doesn’t have to lead to social isolation for those with hearing loss

Untreated hearing loss is known to raise the risk of social isolation. The connection between hearing loss, social isolation and a reduced quality of life has been the subject of many research studies over the years [1][2].

When hearing loss develops, our ability to hear everyday life and interact with others becomes extremely challenging. As a result, those that leave their hearing loss untreated may begin to avoid social situations and activities where communication is key. As the hearing loss continues to develop, they may even completely withdraw and isolate themselves from friends and family. 

Social isolation can have many negative repercussions on our lives, especially as we age. It can put a strain on relationships and lead to many physical and mental health conditions such as depression, heart disease, irregular immune systems, dementia and Alzheimers [3]. 

Social distancing is becoming our new normal

Many hearing aid wearers feel that wearing hearing aids has a positive impact on their overall quality of life. With today’s current global situation, the confidence in social situations and increased ease of interaction that a hearing aid wearer would normally enjoy is now limited. For those with hearing loss that has remained untreated, the impacts of social isolation may be worsened by social distancing. Although avoiding contact with one another is necessary to control the spread of this virus, those with hearing loss are likely feeling more isolated than ever.

Stay connected with the latest hearing aid technology

Hearing aid technology offered today features remote programming options. This allows you to remotely communicate with your hearing care professional to make minor adjustments to your hearing aids. Our telehealth program, Hearing Care Anywhere, keeps your hearing aids functioning at their optimal performance. Now, thanks to a Thrive Hearing Control app update, remote programming is available for anyone with Livio, Livio AI and Livio Edge AI  hearing aids, even if the device was not originally configured for the feature.

Social distancing doesn’t have to equal social isolation

If you have hearing loss and you’re struggling, contact your local hearing professional! Even if their clinic is closed, many providers are still available to help in any way they can. Several professionals have developed processes and procedures to provide assistance to their patients in need in a safe, contact-free way.

If you know someone struggling with hearing loss, reach out to them and see how they’re doing. When you do, understand that they may be having a really difficult time. Give your friends, family and neighbors a call or text and see if they need assistance or just want to chat. Any effort to connect can go a really long way in making someone feel less alone through these challenging times.

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By Starkey Canada

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