It's Not Just Hearing Loss, It's A Communication Loss

It's Not Just Hearing Loss, It's A Communication Loss

Hearing loss reduces quality of life and is dangerous. Adults with untreated hearing loss are …

… up to 5 times more likely to develop dementia

… up to 3 times more likely to suffer falls

… less likely to participate in organized social activities, leading to feelings of depression.

  • Nearly 33% of adults 70 years and older have a hearing loss that impacts daily communication.1
  • Fewer than 25% of adults with significant hearing loss use hearing aids.1
  • On average, it takes people 7 years to seek treatment for hearing loss from the time they feel they are affected.
  • Hearing loss can make it more difficult to interact with peers and can lead to decreased social engagement, depression, or bad moods.1
  • There is a strong relationship between hearing loss and depression among US adults of all ages (18 and older).2
  • Untreated hearing loss, social isolation, and depression can all contribute to an overall poorer quality of life.

It is important to recognize early signs of hearing loss.  Feelings of isolation and depression may be side effects of untreated hearing loss.

Consider a hearing test if you… 

… hear people talking, but it’s not clear, especially in noisy situations like restaurants and parties.

… turn the TV up too loud for those around you.

… have difficulty following the conversation when talking to family and friends.

… limit your personal or social life because of your hearing.

Hearing loss may limit your social engagement and lead to depression if: 

1. You avoid simple duties.

2. You find yourself avoiding or withdrawing from social situations.

3. You feel alone even with family and friends. 


1. Lin, Frank R., and Marilyn Albert. “Hearing Loss and Dementia – Who’s Listening?” Aging & Mental Health, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2014,

2. Li C, Zhang X, Hoffman HJ, Cotch MF, Themann CL, Wilson MR. Hearing Impairment Associated With Depression in US Adults, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2010. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2014;140(4):293–302. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2014.42

Those darn masks! 

Wearing a mask is normal during these difficult times. For those suffering with untreated hearing loss it was hard to clearly understand speech before masks. Now that just about everyone is wearing one, clarity and understanding are even more difficult. Many people with hearing loss learn to read lips because they cannot hear clearly, something they can no longer do as people cover their mouths. To make matters worse, speech is muffled by the mask, which kills communication and adds to the frustration of hearing loss.

People who wear hearing aids also have trouble because of the masks. Masks muffle voices. If you wear hearing aids and are struggling to understand speech because of masks, I may be able to help by making an adjustment to your aides to help you hear and understand when someone is wearing a mask. I also adjust, service, and repair most brands of hearing aids. Please call Affordable Hearing Help at (813) 395-6764.

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