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Can not wearing hearing aids make your hearing worse?

Senior woman cupping her hand behind ear to hear better

If you have a hearing impairment that can be improved by wearing hearing aids, failing to use these devices might actually make your condition worse. What’s more, untreated hearing loss can negatively affect your overall health, trigger depression and lead to social isolation. While there are many reasons you might not want to wear hearing aids, here’s why you should reconsider.

Concerns among new users

When you first start wearing hearing aids, you might get the impression that the devices are making your hearing worse. This is a common misconception among new hearing aid users, and it shouldn’t discourage you from wearing your hearing aids.

The reality is that hearing loss tends to be gradual, which gives you time to get used to it and develop coping strategies. Once you start wearing hearing aids, however, you’ll become more aware of the sounds you couldn’t hear without them.

The danger of makeshift solutions

Some people might think it’s enough to compensate for their hearing loss by cranking up the volume on the TV or purchasing a generic hearing amplifier. The problem with this first tactic is that exposure to excessively loud sounds can further degrade your hearing. In the case of hearing amplifiers, they might do more harm than good since these devices can’t be calibrated like hearing aids to suit your unique needs.

How hearing loss affects your brain

Hearing relies on more than just your ears. In fact, the brain plays a huge role in distinguishing sounds from one another. This is particularly important when it comes to understanding language, which relies heavily on subtle auditory cues.

However, your brain needs practice in order to retain this skill. Over time, if it doesn’t receive enough auditory input, your brain can lose the ability to distinguish between similar sounds and words. Wearing a hearing aid helps the language areas of your brain stay active and ensures you retain the ability to understand speech.

Personalized hearing care in Alberta

A hearing impairment won’t stop you from living life to the fullest, and there’s a wide range of hearing aid options to suit your needs and lifestyle. At Soundwave Hearing Care, we’re proud to offer a variety of services to help you hear better. We administer hearing tests and provide personalized audiology care for patients in Calgary, Grande Prairie, High River and Lethbridge. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment.