“Knowledge is power. Information is liberating.
Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.”
During 2023, we resolve to Educate Well Monthly and care to share daily on applicable auditory topics. Too few recognize how highly respected scientists devote years and careers to publish evidence-based data, intended to enlighten healthcare decision making. Peer-reviewed research, meeting rigorous standards, is reputably useful. In personalized ways and readily understandable terms, you should know how hearing loss relates to common medical conditions. Throughout the year we will consistently deliver credible resources and answer your essential questions.
As your quality of life advocate, with emphasis on clear communication, certain core terminology must be explained, including these two terms:
- Comorbidity, referring to how two medical conditions or chronic diseases relate to one another
- Multimorbidity, referring to how more than two medical conditions or chronic diseases relate to one another
Hearing loss and vision loss are common comorbidities, with Dual Sensory Loss a descriptor. Both are, among other factors, age-related, so as populations grow older, it will inevitably affect rising numbers of individuals. As point of fact:
“A 2017 report on the Global Burden of Disease estimated that collectively, hearing and vision loss were the largest contributors to years lived with disability (YLD) among adults 65 years or age and older, the second largest contributors among adults 50–64 years of age, and the third largest contributor among adults 45– 49 years of age.” 1
Suffice it to say, Dual Sensory Wellness is the antidote sought for 10’s of millions of North Americans who are or may be negatively affected. Joys of Hearing and Beautiful Sights help us to live life better.
When driving without necessary acuity turns risky or reading smaller text frequently frustrates, most people make healthy decisions about vital vision care. Case in point, this is why eyeglasses, contact lenses and cataract surgery are relatively routine. In contrast, far too few proactively benefit from skilled diagnostics regarding auditory challenges and prescribed treatment plans which empower them to experience Joys of Hearing. Just as 20/20 vision is a worthy focus, so are distinct pleasures of life’s soundtrack.
In addition, Dual Sensory Loss relates and may contribute to depressive status and symptoms. “Research involving sensory loss and depression has documented that a substantially larger proportion of persons with visual impairment of DSL experience depression or depressive symptoms than the general population.” 2
This study’s Implication’s section states:
- “Experiencing the DSL causes an initial spike in depression, as expected with the onset of a disability, which is often a traumatic experience that causes increased stress for the individual.” 3
- “Often people with sensory losses try to continue to function as they did prior to the loss, even when the methods they used are no longer effective.” 2
- “As deficits increase, which they often do as the person ages, these methods usually become ineffective. Over time, depression increases, which may be associated with further deterioration of hearing and vision and with the increased inability to function as one did prior to the sensory losses.” 2
As you see your Ophthalmologist or Optometrist for annual eye exams, we advise you and your loved ones to get a professional hearing checkup annually. For your benefit, we’d be pleased to see and hear from you. For multiple reasons, being Happy to Hear is functionally sensible!
1 Theo Vos, et al, Global, regional, and national incidence, prevalence, and years lived with disability for 328 diseases and injuries for 195 countries, 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016, The Lancet, Volume 390, Issue 10100, 2017, Pages 1211-1259, ISSN 0140-6736, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32154-2.
2 McDonnall MC. The effects of developing a dual sensory loss on depression in older adults: a longitudinal study. J Aging Health. 2009 Dec;21(8):1179-99. doi: 10.1177/0898264309350077. PMID: 19897782; PMCID: PMC2789482.
3 Livneh, Hanoch, and Richard F. Antonak. “Psychosocial adaptation to chronic illness and disability: a primer for counselors.” Journal of Counseling and Development, vol. 83, no. 1, winter 2005, pp. 12+. Gale Academic OneFile, link.gale.com/apps/doc/A130567741/AONE?u=googlescholar&sid=bookmark-AONE&xid=b324d55b. Accessed 27 Dec. 2022.