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Can A Hearing Aid Improve Your Sex Life? Making Whoopee Never Sounded So Good

It might sound strange (OK, it does sound strange) but the science backs up the conclusion that a hearing aid can improve your sex life. Hard to believe? Check out this quote from the National Council on the Aging (NCOA) web site:

Hearing-Aids-improve-Sex-life-747.jpgActually, when you think about it, a healthy sex life is based on good communication between partners, and if one of those partners experiences hearing loss to the degree that it interferes with effective communication, the couples love life may well be side-tracked.

Whats interesting in the NCOA quote is that family members living with hearing aid users were more likely to report improvements. Well, yeah, sure. Theyre the ones who have to constantly repeat what they say and plug their ears because the television is too loud. Naturally, these family members will report improvements more openly because theyve experienced the effects of hearing loss on family relations and sexual activity (or the lack thereof).

Its Not Just About Sex (Though It Is A Little Bit)
The NCOA study wasnt directly related to establishing a correlation between hearing health and the quality of an individuals sex life. However, it was a fact that came out during the study itself.

The NCOA study was more expansive, examining a range of relationships within a family, along with the feelings of hearing aid wearers and their family members. Thus, the report identified a number of factors that may, ultimately, have a negative impact on a couples sexual relationship.

Some of the benefits to wearing a hearing device identified in the survey include: improved relations at home (66% of hearing aid wearers noticed an improvement), feelings about self (60%), life in general (62%), social life (34%) and sex life (8%), which means eight men and women out of every 100 survey respondents noticed an improvement in their sex lives when a hearing aid was worn by a hearing impaired partner.

A Quiet, Romantic Dinner? Say What?
The proverbial quite, romantic dinner may not pave the way to satisfying sexual relations when one partner seems distant and aloof and the other is shouting to be heard. Hardly a mood setter, youd have to agree.

Hearing impaired individuals who dont employ a hearing aid are more likely to feel self-conscious. Theyre more likely to feel sadness, anxiety and depression and maintain a negative self-image based on hearing loss alone. Theyre also more likely to feel socially isolated. These are emotions that wont be lessened by a quiet romantic dinner. On the contrary, the hearing impaired diner may well feel more aware of his or her hearing problem and the negative effects that problem is having on his or her relationship.

So Why Dont People Wear Hearing Aids?
Most will tell you that their hearing isnt bad enough to require a hearing aid. Others point to the stigma of wearing a hearing aid. Unfortunately, hearing aids are usually associated with old age, weakened physical condition, lower levels of cognitive development and other unflattering factors. As a culture, we dont feel that way about people who wear glasses, but when it comes to hearing aids, people see them as signs of being broken, which in turn does little for self-esteem, which in turn is not very conducive to healthy sex, regardless of the ages of the couples.

Another quote from the NCOA study suggests that denial and vanity both play a role in an individuals reluctance to being fitted for and using a hearing device. James Firman, Ed.D. and President and CEO of the National Council on the Aging pointed out just how unnecessary these relationship problems are:

Okay, youre reading this and saying to yourself, Easier said than done, Dr. Firman. And thats true. How do you insist that a 75-year-old man with obvious hearing impairment see a hearing health professional for treatment? What are you going to do if he doesnt go? Ground him? Some of these seniors can be pretty stubborn. And most dont know about the amazing improvements made by the hearing aid industry over the past 10 or 15 years.

Hearing aids are no longer big, clunky amplifiers. Todays devices are more akin to micro-computers. Theyre discreet. Theyre automated. And they deliver a higher quality of sound and improved wearing and hearing comfort than the hearing devices of just a generation ago. Todays hearing aids are high tech all the way. Some are also designed as fashion accessories in bright colors orange, blue, purple and different colors that tell others I wear a hearing aid and I dont care who knows it. In fact, want to take a closer look?

In an article written by Sergei Kochkin, Ph.D., and Director of the Better Hearing Institute (BHI), the author quotes a couples therapist with a practice in Blacksburg, Virginia. Therapist Dr. Fred Piercy states:

Coincidentally, Dr. Piercys wife, Susan, is an audiologist who wears a hearing aid so Dr. Piercys view is based, not on abstract studies, but on his daily experiences.

Dr. Kochkins report goes on to state that, [when] a person gets a hearing aid, it often helps the spark return to the relationship, both in and out of bed. You might even think of a hearing aid as Viagra for the ears. Well, maybe they should start selling little blue diamond shaped hearing aids?

But Dr. Kochkin makes a valid point. There are numerous studies available that demonstrate that hearing impaired individuals feel better about themselves once theyre fitted for a hearing device. Self-esteem increases along with self-confidence. Its a natural outgrowth of an improved ability to communicate effectively.

The Strange Coupling of Sexology and Audiology
Most of us might find it hard to make the connection between a healthy sex life and healthy hearing but the data is there from both the science of psychology (sexologists are specialists within that broader field of study) and audiology study of hearing and hearing loss.

The connection between good family relations and healthy hearing isnt necessarily a straight line. Hearing loss affects all aspects of ones self-image. And a less-than-positive self-image isnt going to improve a couples sex life.

The solution is simple. Todays hearing aids are discreet, self-adjusting computers for the ear. They improve the ability to pick up on flirtatious nuance and to stay connected through improved communication. So, if the flame has gone out in your relationship, it might not be for a lack of interest or desire.

It could be as simple as a treatable hearing loss. Bottom line? Have your hearing screened by a hearing professional, and if necessary, get fitted with the latest in digital technology for improved hearing.

Then, once you can hear the subtle, sexual cues provided by your partner, well, then its really time to get busy.

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