Virtually no condition in medicine can have as profound an effect on quality of life as even moderate hearing loss in some people. Hearing loss makes even routine communication difficult. High frequency hearing loss often involves loss of ability to hear consonants such as s, f, t, and z, even though vowels can be heard normally. Consequently, people hear but cannot make out what is being said. This may result in frustration, withdrawal from social activities, depression, and marital discord.
People lose the ability to take in the sounds like bird songs, rustling of leaves, and the voices of children. In general, these infringements on the quality of life can be overcome through medical or surgical treatment or with hearing aids. When hearing loss occurs early in childhood, its devastating consequences are more obvious than when it occurs late in life. A hearing deficit in infants can interfere with psychological, emotional, and speech development. It also makes learning a mammoth task and can cause frustration or isolation. Even more mild forms of hearing loss early in life can cause great difficulties, including poor attention and bad grades in school. Frequently, such children are considered “not too bright,” before anyone realizes that a hearing loss is present. When it is corrected, the changes in the child’s performance, attitude, and interactions are often remarkable.
Facts About Hearing Loss: