Can hearing aids make a noticeable change in demeanor?
A woman shares that her next-door neighbor is a curmudgeon; always has been. Which is why she was so surprised last week when he actually spoke to her for the first time. Not just, “hi,” but dialogue. Friendly. Engaged. Caring. The neighbor asked about her daughter’s first year at college. Then, shared his observations about the birds flying about this time of the year. Turns out he can hear now with his new hearing aids.
If a person's hearing aids are right for their hearing loss, and the programming is on-target . . . Hearing aids really can noticeably change a person's demeanor.
I see this routinely in my office. If you have normal hearing, you take your hearing for granted. It’s natural to assume that others have the same awareness and information you do.
But hearing loss is a state where there is an absence of information. Resignation of not being able to hear and carry on a conversation can be mistaken for curmudgeonly. We all tend to avoid situations where we are uncomfortable or don’t see a chance of success.
If you ‘know’ you’re not going to be able to hear, it’s easier to avoid the situation. When we engage socially, it’s natural to want to enjoy the opportunity. Social situations look a little bit different for everyone who has untreated hearing loss. I’ve heard . . .
“I’m a homebody, because I can’t hear anyway.”
“I’m fine one-on-one, but if there is more than 4 people in a group, I walk away.”
“If I can see their face, I can tell what is being said. Otherwise, forget it.”
The aim with hearing care is to help patients engage with others. So, they don’t have to settle for, ‘forget it.’ One of the great joys of my work is to see the change in people with hearing loss treatment. It’s as if a great burden is lifted.
I suspect that’s what the woman experienced with her neighbor. He likely felt uncomfortable about not being able to hear before. Now, he’s experiencing a brand new world.
You don’t have to settle for a life less than fully lived. Have you been struggling with hearing loss? Caring for your hearing can transform your life and relationships. Why not experience life to the fullest? Call our office today to schedule your consultation! 208-746-7022.