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Hearing Aids: Early Use Prevents Auditory Atrophy

There is a growing collection of detailed studies that demonstrate, clinically, that people with hearing loss have more success with hearing loss treatments, such as hearing aids, when they act quickly. 

Why? Because when the hearing mechanism is deprived of sound, the parts that make up that complex collection of bones and membranes atrophy – weaken – making recovery from hearing loss through mechanical means, aka a hearing aid, that much more difficult. This process is often referred to auditory deprivation. 

The key to hearing better longer is to keep the hearing mechanisms stimulated and prevent atrophy. Through the use of hearing aids – early, when you first notice hearing loss – you’ll enjoy a better quality of hearing longer. 

The causes of adult-onset auditory deprivation? The most common cause is simple. The person with the hearing loss either doesn’t recognize the loss or denies it. In either case, no action is taken and the hearing mechanism is deprived of sound. 

Another cause of auditory deprivation is single-ear hearing aid use. This asymmetrical setup causes one ear to take on more of the listening activity than the other, causing atrophy in the unaided ear and weakening it over time. 

There is good news. Several studies have demonstrated the ear can recover from the effects of auditory atrophy (deprivation); however, the sooner treatment is sought the better. 

The solution? See a hearing professional when you first suspect hearing loss. The sooner you act when you suspect hearing loss, the better your hearing will be in the years ahead. 

To learn more about the effects of auditory deprivation and how hearing aids can help prevent auditory deprivation, visit: Hearing Loss and Auditory Deprivation: Use It or Lose It.

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