Senior woman fell down and is sitting on carpet and touching forehead with hand

Kids have a tendency to fall pretty much every day. Taking a tumble on your bicycle? Not unusual. Getting tripped up while sprinting across the yard. Happens all of the time. It isn’t really a concern because, well, kids are kind of limber. They don’t usually stay down for long.

As you grow older though, that becomes less and less true. The older you get, the more concerning a fall can become. One reason for this is that bones are more brittle and heal slower when you’re older. Older individuals tend to spend more time lying on the floor in pain because they have a harder time getting back up. Because of this, falls are the number one injury-related cause of death in people over 65.

That’s why tools and devices that can decrease falls are always being sought out by healthcare professionals. Hearing aids may be just such a device according to research.

Can falls be caused by hearing loss

If you want to know how hearing aids could possibly prevent a fall, you need to ask this relevant question: does hearing loss make a fall more likely to begin with? It seems as though the answer might be, yes.

So why does hearing loss raise the risk of a fall for people?

That link isn’t exactly intuitive. After all, hearing loss does not directly impact your ability to move or see. But this kind of direct impact on your mobility, and an elevated danger of falling, can be a result of some hearing loss symptoms. Here are a few of those symptoms:

  • Loss of balance: How is your balance affected by hearing loss? Well, your inner ear is extremely significant to your total equilibrium. So you might find yourself dizzy, experience vertigo, and lose your balance when hearing loss impacts the inner ear. In other words, you have a tendency to fall more often.
  • You have less situational awareness: You may not be able to hear the sound of your neighbor’s footsteps, the barking dog next door, or an approaching vehicle when you have untreated hearing loss. In other words, your situational awareness may be significantly affected. Can loss of hearing make you clumsy like this? Well, in a way yes, day-to-day activities can become more dangerous if your situational awareness is compromised. And that means you could be slightly more likely to unintentionally bump into something, and take a fall.
  • High-pitched sounds get lost: You know how when you go into an auditorium, you instantly know that you’re in a spacious venue, even if you close your eyes? Or how you can instantly tell that you’re in a small space when you get into a car. That’s because your ears are utilizing high-frequency sounds to help you “echolocate,” basically. When you can no longer hear high-frequency sounds because of hearing loss, you can’t make those judgments quite as quickly or easily. This can cause disorientation and loss of situational awareness.
  • Exhaustion: Your brain is working extra hard and you’re always straining when you have neglected hearing loss. Your brain will be continuously tired as a consequence. A tired brain is less likely to detect that obstacle in your path, and, as a result, you might wind up tripping and falling over something that an alert brain would have seen.
  • Depression: Social solitude and maybe even mental decline can be the outcome of untreated hearing loss. You are likely to be at home a lot more when you’re socially isolated, and tripping hazards will be all around without anyone to help you.

Age is also a factor when it comes to hearing loss-associated falls. As you age, you’re more likely to experience irreversible and advancing hearing loss. At the same time, you’re more likely to have a fall. And when you’re older, falling can have much more severe repercussions.

How can the danger of falling be reduced by wearing hearing aids?

It makes sense that hearing aids would be part of the remedy when hearing loss is the problem. And this is being confirmed by new research. One recent study found that wearing hearing aids could cut your risk of a fall in half.

The connection between remaining on your feet and hearing loss wasn’t always this clear. That’s partially because people often fail to wear their hearing aids. So it was inconclusive how often hearing aid users were falling. This was because people weren’t using their hearing aids, not because their hearing aids were malfunctioning.

But this new study took a different (and perhaps more accurate) approach. People who wore their hearing aids now and then were separated from people who wore them all of the time.

So how can you prevent falls by using hearing aids? They keep you less exhausted, more focused, and generally more alert. The increased situational awareness also helped. Additionally, many hearing aids have safety features designed to activate in the case of a fall. Help will come faster this way.

Regularly using your hearing aids is the key here.

Prevent falls with new hearing aids

Hearing aids can help you catch up with your friends, enjoy quality time with your loved ones, and remain connected to everybody who’s significant in your life.

They can also help you remain on your feet, literally!

If you want to find out more about how hearing aids could help you, schedule an appointment with us right away.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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