Research estimates 43% of patients over 60 may be missing crucial health information because of hearing loss. At a time when following medical guidance is so critical, patients could be missing important details related to their care.
There is a Worldwide Hearing Epidemic
Hearing loss isn’t a small problem. Worldwide, a third of individuals who are 65 or older have debilitating hearing loss.
But surprisingly, if we look a little closer we discover that only 30% of those people who suffer from debilitating hearing loss have taken steps to better their situation. When it comes to medical care, this is bad news.
With Health Care – Communication is Crucial
One of the leading causes of death is medical error and miscommunication is a primary cause of medical error. A study from Harvard showed that up to 37% of severe injuries that were caused by medical errors could have been prevented with better communication. Lives could be saved if crucial information could be better communicated with patients.
How Medical Care is Affected by Hearing Loss
When you are talking to pharmacists, nurses, or doctors there is some info you won’t want to miss so let’s not linger on statistics.
With regards to reaching health objectives, the advice of health care professionals is a key element. They may talk about what balanced levels are for things like blood sugar or blood pressure. They may tell you to stay away from certain foods to prevent spikes in these levels that can be harmful. You may be missing crucial pieces of advice that would help you manage your condition.
These medical providers might explain danger zones that suggest that you need medical care. You may not get the assistance that you require because you didn’t completely comprehend what your doctor was explaining.
There might be essential details about dangerous side effects of medications which your pharmacist is attempting to make you aware of. You could end up in the hospital or worse because you thought you heard all the information but you didn’t.
Your physical therapist gets you started with a strength-building regimen but warns you against a specific activity. You miss the advice and suffer a serious fall as a result.
Why discussing Medical Details is Particularly Demanding
Communicating medical information is especially difficult because of a little thing called context. When you miss some piece of information as a result of your hearing loss, you make use of context to attempt to fill in what you missed. Compensating for hearing loss is something your brain is actually rather good at. You might even come to think that you heard something that you actually didn’t hear, it’s that good at compensating.
With medical information something as small as a “don’t” or “not” can totally alter the meaning of a sentence. A danger zone, goal, or dosage, could be
entirely changed with one missed number.
In medical care the slightest details matter. Missing them has been shown to result in medical errors.
Having Your Hearing Loss Treated
If you have hearing loss, you might be missing needed medical advice. It’s time to do something about that and get your hearing back.