For those with hearing loss, hearing aids can make a world of difference with improved communication and relationships. Unfortunately, many of those who have hearing loss do not take the necessary steps to get a hearing aid. In fact, it is estimated only one out of five people who could benefit from a hearing aid wears one and many of those wait years before getting one. Further, of those who do work with a hearing health care provider to get a hearing aid, up to 24% choose not wear them.
With growing research into the vast health benefits hearing aids offer for those with hearing loss, researchers are delving into why so many choose not to use them. Here are some of the top reasons why people are giving up on their hearing aids and why they shouldn’t:
It’s not a good fit
In studies, people have given a variety of reasons for choosing not to wear hearing aids and issues around fit are often top of the list. This may mean both a physical “fit” or a lifestyle “fit.” In some cases, further fittings are needed to make a hearing aid more comfortable and usable for the wearer, in others, the hearing aid itself may need to be changed to make it a better fit for daily use. Getting started with and using a hearing aid is a process which is why working closely with a professional is so important. If you’re hearing aid isn’t a fit, consider:
- Working with your hearing health care provider to identify adjustments, physical and in programming, that can be made to your hearing aid. This can help make it more comfortable to wear or make hearing in noisy environments easier.
- If you have worked with your provider and still find the hearing aid to be a poor fit, discuss additional options with your audiologist or hearing aid provider. Perhaps you would benefit from a different style of hearing aid, or you need additional hearing aid features that are not included in your current model.
It doesn’t work
When people choose to get a hearing aid, many times expectations are very high about the immediate impact it will make. It’s important to remember that, while hearing aids can make a big impact on hearing, health and relationships, it will not happen overnight and they will not return hearing to perfect, pre-hearing loss levels and function. Experts caution those with hearing loss getting a hearing aid fitting to be patient with the process. Hearing aids take time to adjust to, both in fit and use, but the payoff in the long term is big!
It’s a hassle
Getting fitted for and purchasing a hearing aid is just the beginning and for many, it’s the daily care and regular maintenance that become a barrier to use. Regular cleanings and battery replacements take time but consider your hearing aid an investment. Proper care and maintenance can protect your investment in your hearing aid and your hearing health for years to come.
There are many reasons people purchase a hearing aid then give up on wearing them. Don’t give up on your hearing! Take advantage of the many resources at your disposal and the expertise of your hearing health care provider to make the most of your investment.