Why Do People Shy Away from Treating Hearing Loss?

In hearing loss by Laurie Duffy, M.S.

Laurie Duffy, M.S.

Laurie Duffy, M.S. has been a licensed audiologist for over 30 years. After working for many years for non-profit rehabilitation agencies and other audiology practices, she established her own practice in 1999.
Laurie Duffy, M.S.

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Hearing loss might not seem like a big deal at first. Often, people believe that they can get by with out treating their hearing loss or have trouble admitting that they have a problem in the first place. Though hearing loss used to be considered a harmless part of getting older, doctors now know that when left untreated it can be the first domino in a sequence of deteriorating health. Hearing loss is tied to depression and anxiety because it can isolate people. The National Institutes of Health estimated that 36 million American adults suffer from some degree of hearing loss; however, only about 7 million wear hearing aids.

The benefits of using a hearing aid not only increases the ability to listen and communicate, but can enhance the overall quality of life in a person who is hearing impaired. The reasons why so many Americans choose not to get help for their hearing is an issue that varies. There are often emotional blocks that when addressed can truly liberate most patients. Here is a list of some of the biggest factors that go into why so many people don’t seek assistance for hearing loss.


Sometimes, people are unaware that they have a hearing loss, and unless someone introduces them to this notion, they will never think to seek treatment. Others suspect that they have hearing loss, but don’t consider it to be a problem to themselves, friends or family. This can be frustrating for those close to someone who is hard of hearing, as they must adjust their lives to accommodate a person close to them with hearing loss. If there is someone close to you that you suspect is suffering from hearing loss it advised to suggest to them in the most non-abrasive way possible to contact us at HearCare Rhode Island to get a hearing test.

Hearing Aids Make You Seem Elderly

Many people think that hearing aids make them seem old. They’re embarrassed to admit that they have trouble hearing and reluctant to accept that they have reached a time in their lives where they have a hearing loss. Most think they can get by without help. The truth is that people who need a hearing aid and don’t wear one are much more likely to be perceived as older than they are. The constant asking people to repeat themselves and the misunderstandings fall directly into the trope of old age.

Not wearing a hearing aid when you have moderate to severe hearing loss has some serious health implications that are much worse than wearing a hearing aid. This includes a 30% increased risk of depression, and a 24% increased risk of dementia, Alzheimer’s and other cognitive decline. It often means you are 3 times as likely to have a serious fall that lands you in the ER and a lengthy hospital stay. When you consider this, hearing aids seem to be an obvious choice.


The expense of hearing aids is often the number one reason many people suffering from hearing issues choose not to get treatment. The price of a hearing aid can range from $499 to more than $4,000, so most people become stressed when they begin to consider whether hearing aids can fit into their budget. What many people don’t realize is that the cost of a hearing aid is something that can be supplemented with insurance or payment plans. Rather than thinking of the high cost of hearing aids, start thinking of them as more of an important investment into your future. Just remember the acute risks of not treating your hearing loss and hearing aids starts to seem like a priceless investment. Consider that studies have linked hearing loss to lower earning power at work and the investment becomes a no brainer. People with untreated hearing loss lose as much as $30,000 annually, depending on their degree of hearing loss. It’s important to understand that hearing aids are an investment opportunity, a chance to cherish the sounds of life that once brought joy and continue to live the rich life we all deserve

Don’t Shy Away

If you suspect that you have a hearing loss don’t delay any longer. Contact us at HearCare Rhode Island to set up a hearing test. You have nothing to lose and so much to gain with hearing clearly again!