How Hearing Loss Affects Senior Citizens

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How Hearing Loss Affects Senior Citizens

by ICC on September 24, 2020
September 24, 2020 / by / in

Many seniors gradually lose their hearing abilities as they age due to a condition that is called presbycusis. Doctors say presbycusis can be more severe in some people than others. While they don’t fully understand why this happens, they have seen that the condition is hereditary.

Besides presbycusis, being exposed to loud noises for a long time can cause hearing loss as it is prevalent in people who’ve worked in construction, the army, and musicians. Hearing loss can be managed, though. Here are a few pointers that can help.

Hearing loss and the brain

According to a study, the brain’s cognitive functions like the formation of thoughts and memory, tend to deteriorate fast in people with hearing loss. Hearing loss was found to correlate with dementia as people with mild hearing loss were proven to be twice-more likely to develop the disease according to a 2011 study.

Treating hearing loss sooner can be more effective than treating it later, as correcting the registration of sonic inputs earlier is better for the brain. Even implementing hearing aids is better if used earlier because familiarizing your ears with them will take time, which will get harder as hearing loss progresses.

Does Medicare cover audiology tests?

Medicare can cover audiology testing but there are usually certain conditions that you will have to know before going for a test and ending up with unexpected bills. One of these conditions is that an audiology test will have to be ordered by a doctor who will want to use the test result for diagnostic purposes.

There are Medicare Advantage plans that offer full cover for audiology tests so contacting your service provider is important. If your plan doesn’t cover routine audiology tests, try Medisupps.com. Its CEO, Russell Noga, an industry veteran, will advise you in detail about Medicare supplement plans 2021

Devices and treatments

The types of devices and treatments that people use for hearing loss depend on how much this condition has progressed for each individual. The most commonly used devices for treating hearing loss are hearing aids that amplify sounds. The process can make things sound different so people usually try different types.

Sometimes audiologists prescribe Cochlear implants that are small devices placed in a patient’s inner through surgery. These implants are mostly used by people with severe hearing loss. In cases where devices can’t help or cause unbearable discomfort, lip-reading classes are recommended so people can understand speech identifying mouth and body movements.

Sign language

When hearing loss has progressed to the point that it has become untreatable, audiologists may recommend sign language classes. Sign language classes are available at most community colleges, they are great places to learn this language as you’ll get qualified tutors and people to practice with.

If you aren’t comfortable with being around strangers, an online course can be a good substitute as several reputable universities and Deaf organizations that offer them. Most online courses will also allow you to study at your own pace as they normally don’t pressure students to finish their courses.

Friends and family

Informing friends and family about hearing loss can make them more open to helping you, especially if you let them know how they can make your hearing experience better. You can do this by asking them to face you when speaking so you can see their facial expressions and move movements.

Requesting that your loved ones speak louder without shouting and to speak clearly without slowing down their speech can help. You can also play a part in making it easier to hear your friend and family by avoiding being around loud noises when listening to them.