Your Hearing Test Results Indicate that You Have Severe to Profound Hearing Loss (SPHL). What Should You Do?
The difficulties caused by severe to profound hearing loss are not simply that they are a little worse than mild to moderate hearing loss. There’s much more to it.
Insight on the repercussions of Severe to Profound Hearing Loss (SPHL)
Patients who have mild to moderate hearing loss experience frustration, confusion, and isolation - which can lead to depression - due to feeling less confident during social situations where listening environments are challenging. Patients with severe to profound hearing loss experience the same problems, but there are additional struggles.
When anyone who has difficulty with hearing also needs to put extra effort in trying to listen to others, they can experience fatigue. People that you communicate with may not be accommodating or sympathetic, which discourages you from trying to fit in or reach out to others.
SPHL makes itself known in every Situation
If you have severe to profound hearing loss, you probably have a lot of trouble with communicating in noisy environments AND in just about any conversation that you engage in, or attempt to engage in. This invisible boundary can hinder your ability to create and build upon relationships. Having friendships or work relationships with others is important to understand where we fit in this society.
Communication isn’t the only problem that you may have. You might feel less confident if something sounds confusing, or isolated if you miss the punchline to a joke that someone makes and everyone else laughs except for you. You could also feel as though you need to rely on others to speak clearly or translate things for you. Sometimes, those moments during a conversation lose their magic or significance when it needs to be repeated.
How Hearing Loss affects Your Mental Health
If your interpersonal relationships are negatively impacted by your hearing loss, that can also negatively affect you. It’s easy to see how isolation can snowball into other problems in relation to your mental health. Anxiety and depression have been closely associated with severe and profound hearing loss. Anxiety and depression significantly increase the chances of social isolation, which can be an issue caused by miscommunications, so the cycle continues.
There have been studies on high rates of depression among people who have normal hearing abilities who communicate with people who are hard of hearing. So it’s not necessarily hearing loss that’s at the center of the problem, but the constant interruption of how a normal conversation should be.
Hearing Aids and a Healthy Social Life
In addition to receiving a great pair of hearing aids that are properly fitted and programmed by a hearing instrument specialist, and possibly auditory training sessions, people with hearing loss MUST HAVE contact with others who are having the same challenges as they are. Whether it’s advice from someone with firsthand experience or just an empathetic person who understands what they are going through, it’s important to have those relationships.
Find those communities, whether it’s an online group or a local hearing loss association chapter. There will be people in similar situations that you can connect with.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a hearing test and consultation. We offer a variety of hearing aids and some listening devices for your journey towards better hearing.