Research estimates 43% of patients over the age of 60 might be missing important health information as a result of hearing loss. Important details, when it comes to health care, might be missed because of hearing loss.
There is a Global Hearing Epidemic
Hearing loss is a big problem. Worldwide, one third of people over the age of 65 have disabling hearing loss.
But astoundingly, if we look a little closer we discover that only 30% of those people who suffer from disabling hearing loss have taken steps to improve their situation. This trend isn’t good news for medical care as we’ll demonstrate next.
The Importance of Communication in Medical Care
Miscommunication is one of the leading causes of medical errors, and medical errors are still one of the leading causes of death. A study from Harvard showed that as many as 37% of severe injuries that were caused by medical errors could have been prevented with improved communication. Lives could be saved if essential information could be better communicated with patients.
How Medical Care is Impacted by Hearing Loss
When you are talking with pharmacists, nurses, or doctors there is some info you won’t want to miss so let’s not linger on statistics.
When it comes to reaching health objectives, the advice of health care professionals is a crucial element. Perhaps they’re talking to you about healthy insulin or blood pressure levels. They may tell you to abstain from certain foods to prevent spikes in these numbers that can be harmful. Dealing with your condition could get away from you if you miss essential advice.
You may be in a situation where your doctor lets you know that you require medical attention. You may not get the assistance that you require because you didn’t completely comprehend what your doctor was saying.
There might be crucial details about dangerous side effects of medications which your pharmacist is trying to make you aware of. You believe you heard everything but you lose an important detail and wind up in the hospital.
Perhaps you receive a warning about some hazardous activity from your physical therapist. You miss the recommendation and suffer a serious fall as a result.
Why discussing Medical Information is Particularly Challenging
Communicating medical information is especially difficult because of a little thing known as context. When you miss some piece of information as a result of your hearing loss, you make use of context to try to fill in what you missed. Compensating for hearing loss is something that your brain is actually pretty good at. So good, as a matter of fact, that it might even convince you that you heard something you didn’t truly hear.
The meaning of a sentence can be entirely altered, when addressing medical information, with something as basic as a “don’t” or “not”. One misunderstood number could totally change a dosage, a goal, or a danger zone.
The smallest detail matters when it comes to medical care. When those little details are missed, it can produce severe medical problems.
Getting Help For Hearing Loss
If you’re suffering from hearing loss, you may be missing needed medical advice. It’s time to do something about that and get your hearing back.