Hearing loss affects 1 in 6 of us, from birth or during our lives, and it has a significant impact on our health and wellbeing. However, only 30% of people who need hearing aids have them.
We hear from one of our Scheduling Assistant's, Sammy, how she copes with her hearing difficulties from day to day.
OC: Hey Sammy, thanks for taking part. How long have you had problems with your hearing?
S: No problem. So, I was born with perforated eardrums and hearing loss - I have worn hearing aids since I was seven as I have a moderate loss in both ears.
OC: Can you tell us more about your hearing aids?
S: I wear one digital hearing aid on my right ear, which I have worn for twenty years now. It helps me daily to be able to communicate properly and to hear what is going on around me.
OC: What difference does your hearing aid make for you?
S: When I'm not wearing my hearing aid, I feel uncomfortable completing everyday tasks such as driving. I also feel I can't participate in group conversations as much as I would like to if I was wearing my hearing aid.
OC: What advice would you give someone that struggles with hearing loss?
S: I would say that you need to research the types of hearing aids that there are as there are so many different types available that can help people differently. But rest assured, once you have found the hearing aid that suits your needs, you will be able to adapt better to your daily life, and you will notice the changes in a positive way.
There seems to be an acceptance that age-related hearing loss, in particular, is inevitable, and you have to put up with it. However, hearing aids are a cost-effective intervention and will improve your quality of life.
We should be looking after our hearing in much the same way as our vision- protecting ourselves from loud noise and seeking help for hearing loss at an early stage.
If you feel your hearing has changed and you need a hearing test, please call us on 0800 60 50 40, and we can visit you at home.