One of the most common complaints about hearing aids is the price. For somebody that has never seriously looked into hearing aids before this can be a tough hurdle to get past. The price range on hearing aids is pretty large. Hearing aids can range from a few thousand dollars to over $10,000 depending on the style, amount of power and level of technology that is required to fix your hearing loss. This is usually why people wait so long to correct their hearing problem. Coincidentally, this is why patients should sit down with a knowledgeable specialist that they trust to walk them through the hearing aid buying process. Taking to the internet to do your research is all well and fine, but if you don’t know what you are looking for or the differences between products, it can make the process far more difficult that it has to be. Spending that kind of money is not “small potatoes” by any means, I encourage our patients to look at correcting their hearing as an investment in themselves and their overall health.
First, let’s look at the “cost” of having untreated hearing loss if you are still working. A study by the Better Hearing Institute found that “hearing loss was shown to negatively impact household income on-average up to $12,000 per year, depending on the degree of hearing loss”. The obvious reason is that people with untreated hearing loss have a communication barrier that those with good hearing (or hearing loss that has been treated properly) don’t have to worry about. Anybody that is in the workforce can attest to the fact that good communication is a big key to success. For those people that don’t want to invest in fixing their hearing, they could end up paying a lot more in the long run.
You could be losing up to a $1,000 a month
because of your untreated hearing loss!
There is also the impact of untreated hearing loss on the overall cost of healthcare. A study performed by the Medical University of South Carolina found that people between age 55 and 64 with untreated hearing loss had significantly higher healthcare costs over an 18-month period compared to their “better hearing counterparts”. Those with an untreated hearing loss had healthcare costs that were 33% higher! These higher medical bills were attributed to a lack of doctor’s visits. This lack of visits was due to difficulty communicating with the doctor, nurses, etc. Difficulty communicating is frustrating and embarrassing, so people put off their medical problems as long as they could to avoid these situations. In simple terms, they were sicker patients by the time they went in to the doctor’s office and therefore required more time and care to get better.
Those are both concrete examples backed up with facts and statistics that tell us that making the investment to fix our hearing problem is actually one of the wisest financial decisions that a person can make. But now let’s examine something less tangible and concrete. Let’s look at the impact of untreated hearing loss on our personal relationships. Specifically, our marriages.
A survey at marriage.com found that “Lack of Communication” was the number three cause for divorce. The website says, “Communication is crucial in marriage and not being able to communicate effectively quickly leads to resentment and frustration for both, impacting all aspects of a marriage”. That sound you hear is everybody who is reading this blog nodding their head in agreement. So, if one of the keys to happy marriage is communication, why live with a giant “communication roadblock” in your life?
I haven’t even touched on some of the other money saving aspects of correcting your hearing loss. Such as the impact of untreated hearing loss and a higher risk rate of dementia. The connection between maintaining your independence and fixing your hearing problems is another strong correlation. But we will save those topics for another blog. The thing I hope you can take away from this post is that fixing your hearing is an investment. And it is an investment that will continue to pay for itself. So, don’t cost yourself money by waiting till your moderate hearing loss becomes severe. As I tell our patients all the time, “Your hearing will never be better than it is today. Because tomorrow your ears are one day older.” Make the investment in better hearing and a better quality of life today. You’ll be amazed at the return on that investment.