As we age, the delicate structure of our inner ear can become damaged or degenerate over time. The result of this can be age-related hearing loss, known as presbycusis. When left untreated, hearing loss can have a significant impact on our quality of lives. It can increase risks of cognitive decline, make communication more challenging, and increase the likelihood of social isolation.
If you have aging parents, you may worry about their hearing health. Knowing when to get a hearing aid for an aging parent may seem straightforward at first, but it can open a whole host of conversations that can be quite sensitive or difficult to have. Prepare yourself for the tough conversations with these tips for dealing with aging parents.
When to Get a Hearing Aid
It is common knowledge that as we age, our hearing declines. It can often feel annoying or even comical at times to deal with a parent who can’t hear well, but not treating hearing loss can lead to other health issues. As a child or relative of someone experiencing hearing loss, it is critical to recognize when your loved one should get a hearing aid.
In some cases, your loved one may be aware of their hearing loss and the impact it is having on the rest of their family. From having to repeat things to frequent misunderstandings, the signs of hearing loss become noticeable over time. To help prevent family dinners from getting to the point of yelling and exaggerated gesturing, book a hearing assessment for your parent to help identify or monitor hearing loss.
Watch for Indicators of Struggle
Hearing loss has been linked to depression as many seniors suffer from feelings of isolation, sadness, and frustration relating to their decrease in hearing. It may become increasingly harder for them to engage in conversation, particularly in loud environments such as restaurants or parties. Be mindful of any instances when a parent mentions avoiding going out or experiencing difficulty hearing in social settings as these two indicators can flag a decline in their hearing. Avoidance or anxiety are telltale signs that a loved one is struggling and can help to prompt a conversation about changes you’ve observed in them.
Social isolation can be tough for seniors to deal with, regardless of the effects of hearing loss. Empty nesters may find themselves needing in-home care, moving into nursing homes, or starting to experience the loss of friends. These transitions often stir up feelings of anger, resentment, and fear and can cause a mortality crisis to spin out.
Doing your part to help them maintain a socially active lifestyle can make a big difference to their level of satisfaction and joy. Regular meals or family gatherings help to encourage a socially active lifestyle, and encouraging participation in hobbies can also inspire a sense of connectedness.
Need Help? Contact Us Today!
As your parent experiences changes to their hearing, they may feel worried about the cost or requirements of a hearing aid. Overcome any resistance by learning about what is involved in getting them the right hearing aid
If you’d like to discuss further, come in and meet the team at Anderson Audiology. Call us today on 702-997-2964. Alternatively, click here to request an appointment online.