Tips for living with hearing loss

Tips for living with hearing loss

According to the Canadian Hearing Society, more than 60% of Canadians over 65 experience some form of hearing loss. The most common form of age-related hearing loss is called presbycusis, which affects the ability to detect high-pitched noises. It happens gradually, so it’s often those around you who notice first.

The impact of hearing loss

Hearing loss is upsetting and frustrating in and of itself, but it can also have a knock on effect in other areas of your life. People with hearing loss may withdraw from social activities because they find it hard to follow a conversation, and as a result may start to feel isolated, lonely, and depressed. Those who live alone may get anxious and nervous because they can’t hear the telephone, doorbell, or fire alarm. Hearing loss has also been connected with cognitive impairment and decline. Indeed, treating hearing loss has been shown to have a positive effect on a person’s cognitive performance, particularly their memory.

What to look out for

If you have any of the following symptoms, it might be time to see your doctor and get your hearing checked.

  • It sounds like people are mumbling.
  • High-pitched sounds are hard to distinguish.
  • You find it hard to follow a conversation.
  • Men’s voices are easier to understand than women’s.
  • You experience ringing in your ears.

How to treat hearing loss

If you recognize any of these symptoms, you should book an appointment with your doctor. They will usually examine your ear for any damage or blockages, and may refer you to a specialist audiologist to perform a hearing test where you’ll be asked if you can hear a range of sounds played to you.

Treatment will depend on a variety of factors but may include:

  • Hearing aids.
  • Assistive devices such as telephone amplifiers or speech-to-text technology.
  • Training in speech-reading.

If you’re the friend or family-member of someone experiencing hearing loss, there are several ways you can help.

  • Always speak clearly.
  • Make sure the person can see you and avoid covering your mouth.
  • Minimize background noise.
  • Be patient and repeat yourself when necessary.

What services are available?

Canadian Hearing Services is a non-profit organization that offers a wealth of information around hearing loss. It also offers counselling services for those with hearing loss, general support services to help you manage everyday life, and hearing health care such as hearing tests and help getting hearing aids.

How to prevent further hearing loss

Even if you’ve already experienced some degree of hearing loss, these prevention techniques can help limit further decline.

  • Reduce exposure to loud noises such as mowing the lawn, listening to music through headphones, using a table saw, or playing a musical instrument.
  • Wear ear plugs or special fluid-filled ear muffs when loud noises are unavoidable.

Hearing loss can be distressing and often has a negative impact on mental health. However, know that there are lots of treatment options and aids out there – hearing loss doesn’t have to hold you back from doing what you love.


The information presented in this blog post is designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this post as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for professional counseling care. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.



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