The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 5% of the world’s population (360 million people) live with some hearing impairment. And in the case of those over 65 years of age, the number of people affected reaches 1 in 3. An undoubtedly high figure that places this group as the priority when it comes to prevention and correction policies. Furthermore, a recent study carried out in Iceland now highlights a direct relationship between hearing loss and the life expectancy of older people: if the first is not corrected, the second is shortened. Therefore, the use of hearing aids is presented as the best ally to hear better. And live more.
The study, titled “Impairments in hearing and vision impact on mortality in older people: the AGES-Reykjavik Study,” was published published in the magazine Age and Aging, from Oxford Journals, in August 2013, according to the Spanish.hear-it.org portal. 4,926 Icelanders aged 67 and older participated in the research. Of them, 25.4% suffered from hearing impairment. And the result was conclusive: the latter have a higher risk of dying in the following five years. Among the most probable causes, cardiovascular diseases.
The positive part of the study is that among people affected by hearing loss, those who used hearing aids managed to maintain their life expectancy. Users of these hearing solutions were older on average and had more severe hearing loss.
This study that supports the use of the hearing aid joins another that indicates that 84% of its users consider themselves “highly satisfied” with its performance. The survey, led by EuroTrak and JapanTrak, was carried out in seven countries: Italy, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Norway and Japan.
Despite these data, too many people are still reluctant to put in a hearing aid. They think that they will be annoying, that they will hear beeps or interference and, above all, that they will be very visible and unaesthetic. However, technological advances refute these arguments with digital products of maximum precision and minimum size. Furthermore, the ear, like any other part of the body, requires stimulation and exercise. If the stimulus disappears, the hearing loss worsens and speech understanding also begins to deteriorate. Hearing aids keep these stimuli active and improve the quality of life of users, who can hear the sounds around them again.