Untreated hearing loss can negatively affect relationships, mental health and general well-being, but it also has unexpected economic repercussions. A World Health Organization (WHO) study estimates the global cost of untreated hearing loss to be approximately $750 billion. Let’s look at the hidden factors of untreated hearing loss and how you can address them.
Where Does the $750 Billion Cost Come From?
WHO considered three different types of costs associated with untreated hearing loss, including:
- Direct costs. Direct costs are costs incurred by healthcare systems.
- Indirect costs. Indirect costs result from productivity losses from people with untreated hearing loss being unable to contribute to the economy. This may be because they are unable to find work or contribute to educational or domestic responsibilities.
- Intangible or societal costs. Intangible costs result from stigma and grief from hearing loss that may manifest in different ways.
What Can You Do?
Direct and indirect costs of hearing loss, such as medical care and inability to work, will be significantly reduced with the treatment of hearing loss. Hearing aids not only help to negate the costs of untreated hearing but provide life-improving benefits to the wearer. Benefits of hearing aids include but are not limited to:
- Amplifying voices. Hearing aids can amplify voices to allow for better communication.
- Reduce background distractions. With hearing loss, background noise can get in the way of understanding. Hearing aids isolate and diminish the sounds of your surroundings so you can focus on one specific thing.
- Improve balance. In some cases, hearing loss can negatively affect your balance and even cause vertigo. Going for a run at Black’s Beach or playing catch with your friends will be much easier with the reduced dizziness hearing aids can provide.
The cost of untreated hearing loss is not only monetary but personal. Your emotional, physical and mental health and even your interpersonal relationships can all be negatively impacted by hearing loss. Choosing to begin your hearing treatment journey can be an empowering experience for you and your loved ones.
To start treatment for your hearing loss, contact San Diego ENT today to speak to one of our hearing specialists.