Here’s a Surprising Way to Show Your Love This Valentine’s Day

Woman and man cuddling on a park bench after getting hearing aids to improve their relationship.

Want to show how much you care? Listen to your loved ones, really listen. That requires, of course, the ability to hear.

Studies reveal millions of individuals would benefit from wearing hearing aids because one out of three adults between the ages of 65 and 74 have some amount of hearing loss. Sadly, only about 30% of these individuals actually use their hearing aids.

This inaction leads to problems hearing, as well as increased dementia rates, depression, and stressed relationships. Suffering in silence is how many individuals endure their hearing loss.

But spring is almost here. It’s a time for emerging leaves, flowers, new beginnings, and growing closer. Talking frankly about hearing loss can be a superb way to renew relationships.

Having “The Talk” is Important

Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, is 2.4 times more likely in people who have neglected hearing loss according to several studies. When the part of your brain responsible for hearing becomes less engaged, it can initiate a cascade effect that can impact your overall brain. This is referred to as “brain atrophy” by doctors. It’s the “use it or lose it” concept in action.

Depression cases among people with hearing loss are nearly double that of a person with normal hearing. Research demonstrates that as a person’s hearing loss gets worse, they often become stressed and agitated. The person might start to seclude themselves from friends and family. They’re likely to fall deeper into melancholy as they stop participating in activities once loved.

Strained relationships between friends and family members is often the result of this isolation.

Solving The Mystery

Your loved one may not be ready to tell you that they are experiencing hearing loss. Fear or embarrassment could be an issue for them. Maybe they’re going through denial. In order to identify when will be the appropriate time to have this conversation, some detective work might be necessary.

Because it’s not possible for you to directly know how bad your spouse’s hearing loss is, you may have to rely on some of the following indicators:

  • Cranking the volume way up on the TV
  • essential sounds, like someone calling their name, a doorbell, or a warning alarm are often missed
  • Staying away from busy places
  • Complaining about ringing, humming, static, or other sounds that you can’t hear
  • Recurring misunderstandings
  • School, hobbies, and work are suddenly becoming harder
  • Irritation or anxiety in social situations that you haven’t previously observed
  • Staying away from conversations

Plan on having a heart-to-heart conversation with your loved one if you observe any of these common signs.

How to Talk About Hearing Loss

Having this discussion may not be easy. You might get the brush off or even a more defensive reaction from a spouse in denial. That’s why it’s crucial to approach hearing loss correctly. You might need to adjust your language based on your unique relationship, but the steps will be more or less the same.

Step 1: Let them know that you love them unconditionally and value your relationship.

Step 2: Their health is important to you and you’re worried. You’ve read the studies. You know that untreated hearing loss can result in an elevated chance of dementia and depression. You don’t want that for your loved one.

Step 3: You’re also worried about your own health and safety. An overly loud TV could damage your hearing. Relationships can also be impacted by the anxiety loud noises can cause, according to some studies. If somebody has broken into your house, or you yell for help, your loved one might not hear you.

People engage with others through emotion. If you can paint an emotional picture of what might happen, it’s more effective than simply listing facts.

Step 4: Agree together to make an appointment to have a hearing exam. Do it immediately after making the decision. Don’t wait.

Step 5: Be ready for your loved ones to have some objections. These might happen anytime during the process. This is someone you know well. What will their objections be? Money? Time? Are they convinced it’s no big deal? Are they thinking about trying home remedies? You recognize “natural hearing loss cures” don’t really work and could cause more harm than good.

Prepare your counter replies. Perhaps you rehearse them beforehand. They don’t have to match those listed above word-for-word, but they should speak to your loved one’s concerns.

Grow Your Relationship

Talking about hearing loss isn’t easy if your significant other isn’t willing to consider it. But by having this discussion, you’ll grow closer and get your loved one the help they need to live a longer, healthier, more satisfying life. Isn’t love all about growing closer?




References

https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/hearing-loss-common-problem-older-adults
https://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/statistics/quick-statistics-hearing#:~:text=About%2028.8%20million%20U.S.%20adults%20could%20benefit%20from%20using%20hearing%20aids.
https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/the-hidden-risks-of-hearing-loss
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5403920/
https://www.nidcd.nih.gov/news/2014/nidcd-researchers-find-strong-link-between-hearing-loss-and-depression-adults

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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