Delaying Amplification After Hearing Loss is Diagnosed
Hearing loss tends to stay the same or get worse over time, sad to say. This is not a issue of your hearing getting worse as you are not wearing hearing aids, it is the amount of life that you are going to be missing with an untreated hearing loss.
Do you currently:
- get into more arguments with your spouse due to miscommunication?
- stop going to restaurants as you cannot understand the conversation?
- are unable to understand on the phone and do not call your friends as often?
- do not enjoy TV as much as either it is too loud for your spouse or too soft for you to understand?
- cannot understand as much of what your children and grandchildren are saying?
The National Council on Aging released a study in 1999 on 2,300 individuals with hearing loss who were over the age of 50. The overall results were "... those with untreated hearing loss were more likely to report depression, anxiety, and paranoia and were less likely to participate in organized social activities, compared to those who wear hearing aids."
When I was fitting hearing aids, people did not come into my office because they were not hearing well, they came in because their hearing loss was affecting their lifestyle. Why spend the next 4, 5, 6, 7, etc. years dealing with these problems when you could get help?
It sounds like from your questions that you are avoiding the issue of getting help with your hearing problem. Hearing aids will not "give you normal hearing" but you will be able to improve your hearing and more importantly, improve the quality of your life.
I would encourage you to expand your list of questions and then find an audiologist in your area so you can sit down and find out what your options are.
Regarding the second part of your question, hearing aids are changing on an almost yearly basis with new features and options, but this is not the main reason why you would be replacing a pair of old hearing aids. A hearing aid sits in your ear canal which is a warm, moist, waxy and oily environment and over time the external components just break down. The #1 cause of hearing aid failure is earwax damaging the speaker on a hearing aid (a good reason to clean your aid daily). This is why most hearing aids last about 4-5 years before needing to be replaced.