“Blindness cuts us from things, but deafness cuts us from people!” – Quote by Helen Keller
Hearing is an essential sense for communication and hearing loss is a hidden disability. It is not uncommon to find many people around us to have hearing loss, but it’s also not uncommon for us to realize that people live with this disability without intervention. It is widely accepted that hearing loss comes with ageing. It builds frustration, withdrawals and affects family dynamic. Recent studies stated that as people age, their hearing loss intensifies and leads to many other problems, such as;
- an increased risk of accident or falling,
- Cognitive impairment or dementia,
- Social withdrawal and depression.
Hearing loss or impairment can happen at all ages. It could be congenital loss for new born babies, acquired loss due to some disease or side effect of medication. Acquired loss can also happen secondary to ear infection or of sudden onset (viral/bacteria). Another type of hearing loss, noise induced, is due to occupational hazards and the most classic type of hearing loss is presbycusis, hearing loss due to ageing.
The question is why suffer in silence?
Audiologic (Hearing) (Re)Habilitation is the process of providing training and treatment to improve hearing for those who are hearing impaired. Fitting hearing aids is just the beginning of the Audiologic Rehabilitation journey. Audiological Rehabilitation Process today is based on the foundation of a “Client-Centered Rehabilitation model that promotes successful adherence to treatment recommendations and professional accountability.”
While that is all theory, the question remains why in this modern world there is a taboo around hearing aids. We all know that hearing aids are not magic-beans. As a Senior Audiologist, eighteen years in the industry, my personal conclusion is that often times people feel that hearing aids do not provide enough value. Consumers of hearing aids are not completely satisfied with the experience of using hearing aids. Their expectations exceed reality and they don’t feel that they get value from the purchase. Phrases like “My hearing aids are noisy”, “My hearing aids are stored in the drawer” or “I’d rather be deaf than use my hearing aids” is not uncommon. There are many reasons for this negativity.
- Consulting untrained personnel
- Hearing test not done up to the professional standards and wrong diagnosis made.
- Wrong Technology
- Proper expectations are not set
- Patient’s story is not heard thus the fitting is not addressing patient’s communication and listening needs
- Proper hearing aid trial is not given prior purchase
- Proper information is not given during the fitting process
- Patient is not counselled enough during the adaptation phase
The question remains; Are you still suffering in silence despite trying various solutions? Nothing beats a professional consultation and undoubtedly fitting hearing aids is unlike fitting spectacles. Based on the foundation of Client Centered therapy, the need for human contact and dialogue is essential to foster trust, confidence and adherence. A fully qualified and experienced Audiologist is the best person to assist, handle and manage individuals and families affected with hearing loss. The way forward is to act now. Allow us at EarMed to assist you in this hearing journey.
Book in for your free hearing assessment today!
Lastly it is always tactful to say ‘Deaf and Mute’ and NOT ‘Deaf and Dumb’Earmed Services 2-5, Jalan Kamaruddin Isa, Pusat Perdagangan Kepayang 31400 Ipoh, Perak. 05-549 1525 www.earmed.com.my