Hearing loss can create feelings of isolation, anxiety, and depression. Communication is at the core of our existence, so when we have trouble hearing the people we know and love, we can start to feel sad. If left untreated, hearing loss can lead to depression and other problems.

At Hearing & Balance Services of Reston, we can help you improve your hearing and work to minimize further hearing loss.

Hearing loss and higher health care costs

The health care costs for men and women with hearing loss are 46% higher than those for people who have normal hearing. In a study of more than 25,000 people, researchers found that hearing loss was linked to mental health disorders, such as anxiety and depression. This may explain the higher costs of health care associated with doctor visits and medications that are often prescribed to people who have anxiety and depression.

Furthermore, depressed individuals are more likely to develop cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and suffer strokes. And men and women diagnosed with depression report having a lower quality of life, and evidence suggests that they have a lower life expectancy, too.

Diagnosing hearing loss

Around 20% of Americans have hearing loss. If you think you have hearing loss, the only way to know for sure is by undergoing a hearing test.

We perform hearing tests to help pinpoint what is causing the problem. We assess your ears, speech, and degree of hearing loss all during your test. These all play a role in deciding what is the best treatment option to help improve your hearing.

Treatment options

Depending on the results of your hearing test, we will discuss what treatment option is best for you. The following are a few of the options:

Earwax removal

Earwax removal is a great option for people who are experiencing hearing loss as a result of blockages. We can remove earwax by using forceps and a suction device or by injecting water into your ear canal.

Hearing aids

If there is a problem with your ears, hearing aids can amplify sounds, which may help you hear better. These tiny, battery-operated devices sit in your ear canal and automatically adapt to your environment, so you can hear in noisy shopping malls and in quieter surroundings at home. There are many unique styles of hearing aids with different features, so you can find one that’s right for you.

Cochlear implant

Another common treatment for hearing loss is a cochlear implant. With this solution, a small sound processor is placed outside your ear to capture sound signals. The processor then sends the signals to a receiver that is implanted under your skin behind your ear. The receiver then sends the signals to your inner ear. This is a good option for people who’ve experienced little improvement with hearing aids.

If you have hearing loss, you’re not alone. We see many people every day who are experiencing it, too. To start on the path to better hearing, book an appointment with Hearing & Balance Services of Reston today.