It turns out there may be a connection between hearing loss and accidental injuries. Senior study author Dr. Neil at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston says that, “many adults believe that hearing loss, particularly due to aging, is ‘normal’ and therefore of little consequence other than, perhaps, social difficulties.”
However, this could not be further from the truth. Dr. Neil goes on to explain the reason for the study. “We were motivated to create this study since hearing is a special sense that plays an important role in warning us of danger in our surroundings,” he explained. “We wanted to see if a poorer hearing ability was related to accidental injuries.”
What they found was a correlation between low quality hearing and accidents. Bhattacharyya and his team analyzed data from the U.S. National Health Interview Survey and discovered that 6.6 million participants said they had suffered an accidental injury in the previous three months. One out of six of those respondents said their hearing was less than excellent or good. The research suggested “a strong relationship between poorer hearing and accidental injury, especially since the rate of injury increased steadily as the reported hearing worsened,” Bhattacharyya said in a hospital press release.
The findings illustrated that people with poor hearing were almost twice as likely to suffer an injury as those with excellent hearing, although the study did not prove that hearing loss caused accident risk to rise. This is simply the beginning of finding the answer to the question being asked and there is still a lot of research to be done on this subject.
The interesting thing about the correlations found in this study was the connection between hearing loss and leisure-related injuries. Bhattacharya comments that, “individuals may not consider [leisure] a high-risk occasion for injury, and may be paying even less attention to their hearing difficulties.” So if you have been enjoying yourself doing a leisure activity and been injured, you are not alone!
The point is that hearing loss does not necessarily cause accidents, but the correlation between hearing difficulties and injury should be considered carefully. If you constantly find that you are getting into little accidents there may be a reason with a real solution! If you think you are experiencing hearing loss come in to see us to get a free hearing evaluation. We will always be here to answer any questions or respond to any and all concerns you may have about hearing health and hearing technology. Call us today to make your appointment and take the next step on your hearing health journey!
The study was published March 22 in the journal JAMA Otolaryngology.
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