What are the benefits of wearing hearing aids?

Published 31 March 2023  | 5 mins read

Whilst they may be small, hearing aids are jam-packed with the most amazing technology to help you hear the world around you – but do you know just how much these tiny superheroes can benefit you?

When do I need to wear hearing aids? 

Whether you already have a hearing loss or are just thinking about the future, an all too common question we often ask ourselves is when do I need to wear hearing aids? Well, the simple answer is the sooner you wear hearing aids for a loss, the better it is. In fact, research shows us that long-term, consistent use of hearing aids slows the progression of hearing loss. So, even if you think your hearing loss is not that bad, you could slow down the progression of your loss by wearing hearing aids. 

What are the benefits of wearing hearing aids?:

Now that you know when you should start wearing hearing aids, let’s talk about the fantastic benefits you and those around you will gain simply by popping these clever little devices into your ears.

A couple walking on autumnal leaves.

Hear the things you used to 

Although we can’t correct our hearing entirely, hearing aids have the power to remind us of the world of sound around us, helping us overcome some of, if not most of, the significant sound barriers we may currently face. You will be able to appreciate all the small things that were once lost, from birdsong in the morning to the crunching of leaves in autumn hearing aids help you tune back into life.

 

Reduce the risk of dementia

One of the lesser-known benefits of wearing hearing aids is that they can reduce the risk of dementia. Research has shown that addressing hearing loss early can actually lessen your risk [1]. Untreated hearing loss can cause auditory deprivation – that is when the part of your brain called the auditory cortex can no longer process certain sounds. When sounds do not reach this part of the brain, it can become less active. It is this reduction in brain activity that is linked to dementia developing.

By wearing hearing aids, you are keeping your auditory cortex active, prolonging your hearing and reducing the risk of dementia developing in later life. Our hearing is the biggest modifiable factor we have control over when it comes to dementia.

A family dinner on a table, outside.

Communication with friends and family

Hearing loss can have a detrimental effect on relationships we have with our nearest and dearest – causing feelings of frustration, annoyance and isolation when trying to communicate. This not only affects the person with hearing loss but can also result in the same feelings in the people around them. 

For those with hearing loss, you may find yourself missing parts of conversations, leaving you with few options – either ask the speaker to repeat themselves, or accept that you’ve missed it and feel withdrawn from the conversation. Those trying to communicate with someone who has hearing loss can often feel exasperated too. This is due to the effort that a person has to put in during a conversation to keep the other person engaged and understanding.

With the help of hearing aids, our relationships can be restored. Hearing aids put you back into the conversation, so not only will you be connected to your loved ones again, but they will be able to effectively communicate with you.

Manage your tinnitus  

Over 30% of the UK population will experience tinnitus at some point in their lifetime [2], whether only for a brief period or an extended amount of time – this can greatly affect your quality of life.

Whilst there is no proven cure for tinnitus, there is lots that you can do to help manage the condition and wearing hearing aids is one of them. If a hearing loss is present, then that is a likely cause of your tinnitus, and you would likely be recommended hearing aids by an audiologist. As well as improving your hearing, these aids lessen the strain on your brain due to decreased listening effort and can reduce the effects of tinnitus.

If you would like to find out more about tinnitus click here. 

A grandson whispering to his grandpa's ear.

Improved quality of life and improved mental health 

With all of these fantastic benefits gained from wearing hearing aids, it’s hard to disagree that hearing aids offer wearers a better quality of life and improved mental health. 

A recent study carried out amongst a group of people with moderate hearing loss found that those who wore hearing aids were 22% less likely to experience psychological distress than those without hearing aids [3].

Find out more about how hearing aids can benefit you

If you would like to find out more about how hearing aids can help you get back to the things you love and hear like you used to, then now is the time to act!

We have friendly audiologists nationwide ready to help you – simply book a FREE hearing assessment at your nearest practice.

[1] Dementia prevention, intervention, and care: 2020 report of the Lancet Commission
Livingston, Gill et al. The Lancet, Volume 396, Issue 10248, 413 – 446

[2] https://tinnitus.org.uk/

[3] Association of Hearing Loss With Psychological Distress and Utilization of Mental Health Services Among Adults in the United States, Bigelow et al. (2020). JAMA network open, 3(7), e2010986. https://doi.org/10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.10986