Hearing aids improve quality of life

Studies and Data

Quality of life suffers when hearing impairment is left untreated. Hearing aids are most often the best remedy. Using hearing aids improves the quality of life in most cases and reduces the negative impact of hearing loss.

Research by the National Council on Aging on more than 2,000 people with hearing loss as well as their significant others demonstrated that hearing aids clearly are associated with impressive improvements in the social, emotional, psychological and physical well-being of people with hearing loss in all hearing loss categories from mild to severe.

Nine in 10 users of hearing aids say their hearing aids improve their quality of life, according to a U.S. study among 1,500 people with hearing aids. (MarkeTrak VII. betterhearing.org)

The study also showed that the hearing aid users' feelings and confidence in self and relationships at work have improved due to their hearing instruments. Respondents were particularly happy about the fit and comfort of their hearing aids, clarity of sound and ability to hear in small groups. Follow-up advice or counseling is important for achieving the best benefits from wearing hearing aids and improves hearing aid users' understanding and use of the devices.

A scientific review of a large number of surveys shows that the use of hearing aids causes significant improvement in the quality of life of hearing impaired people. The results of all studies reviewed are remarkably consistent:

  • Hearing aids improve overall quality of life for most users.
  • Hearing aid users enjoy better overall health than non-users.
  • Hearing aid users are perceived by their families to have better cognitive functioning than non-users and to be less introverted.
  • The most beneficial effects of hearing aids are found in the users' social lives, taking part in group activities, and family relationships.
  • Hearing impaired people with hearing aids have greater self-confidence, stronger self-image and better communicative functioning, resulting in overall higher self-esteem, than those without aids.
  • Hearing aids help to reduce deterioration in psychological functioning as a result of hearing impairment.
  • Hearing aids can reverse social, emotional and communication dysfunctions caused by hearing impairment.
  • Hearing aid users are more likely than non-users to engage in activities involving other people.
  • Hearing aids improve most aspects of emotional life and hearing aid users have greater warmth and less negativity in personal relationships than non-users.

Source: "Evolution of the Social and Economic Costs of Hearing Impairment", October 2006, Hear-it AISBL