Many people find it hard to believe that leaving your hearing loss untreated can call for serious ramifications. Concealing your hearing loss, especially in a workplace, is something many Americans do for fear of losing important responsibilities and tasks. However, getting your hearing loss treated and using hearing aids can be significantly beneficial to not only your workplace, but daily life.
Loss By Numbers
A study conducted by the Better Hearing Institute (BHI), has found that people who leave their hearing loss untreated lose nearly $30,000 in annual income, depending on their severity. Around 60% of the 34 million Americans that suffer from hearing loss are employed in the workforce, and when hearing loss is left untreated it can cause limited productivity and performance which results in lower income. According to the study done by BHI, they found a highly positive relationship between the degree of hearing loss and unemployment for those who don’t wear hearing aids. Those diagnosed with severe hearing loss had unemployment rates of almost double than that of their associates that wore hearing aids, 15.6% and 8.3% respectively. The numbers of this study are truly astounding, and proves that leaving hearing loss untreated may not be the smartest option in the long run.
Changes In The Workplace
Surgei Kochkin, Ph.D., is an executive director for BHI and advocates for employers to support the use of hearing aids within the workplace. Kochkin promotes integrating a few steps within the corporate workforce:
Allowing hearing aids to be covered by company insurance policies.
Design cubicles and smaller work spaces with noise-absorbent materials.
Create a company culture that supports hearing loss positively and acknowledges that this condition is acceptable. Workers who may feel hesitant to get their hearing checked, or even hide their hearing loss on the job may be positively affected by the change in corporate climate.
Allow for easy accommodations, for instance, having the ability to move an employee’s desk or workstation away from noisy hallways or loud coworkers.
Get Your Hearing Checked
Possibly the biggest takeaway from this study should be that companies need to encourage their human resource executives to increase education and awareness of hearing loss within the workplace. This topic is extremely relevant due to the fact that approximately 50% of people with untreated hearing loss have never gotten their hearing checked by a professional, according to Dr.Kochkin. Getting your hearing checked annually by a professional is highly recommended. If you would like to get your hearing checked, then please call us today!