Hearing loss

An interesting  Lifestyle and Hearing Health Survey arrived on my desk this week from Dr Ross Walker, one of Australia’s leading preventative health specialist and because my father Frank, is deaf, I filled it in and read the small print, too.

Since a road accident in 1997, I have suffered constant tinnitus, a ringing or buzzing in both ears, so already my hearing is somewhat impaired.

Dr Walker says I am among one in six Australian adults (more than 3.5 million people) who have some form of hearing loss – and the figure rises to one in three over 60 years.

He says poor hearing impacts negatively on people’s quality of life creating feelings of extreme frustration, anger and increasing isolation from family and friends. The acid test here is if you need to ask people to repeat themselves as you didn’t quite catch every word or if you have difficulty understanding conversations in crowded restaurants, it may be time to check out your hearing.

What frustrates him is  that “large numbers  of people with hearing loss either don’t recognise their problem, or are in denial’’.

His message, via the survey is that medical research has proven that early diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss really helps people resume a normal life.

He suggests everyone over 60 years should have their hearing checked every couple of years. Anyone with the added problem of diabetes should check their hearing every 12 months.

The good news is that hearing aids are now virtually invisible and I remember receiving a neat stylish hearing aid in a slick container when I worked at The Advertiser.

Interestingly the survey which links our lifestyle and interests questions drives home firstly how enjoyment of life through leisure, hobbies and holidays  are dependent on hearing.

Wearing a sophisticated invisible hearing aid to enhance our quality of life seems a sensible step towards ageing well.

AudioClinic has also produced The Australian Guide to Hearing Services and offers a no-obligation FREE Hearing Test by calling 1800 057 220 (valued at $70).

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