Sudden hearing loss can take you and your loved ones by surprise, but in reality a staggering number of people have some form of hearing loss—one in six globally. Adjusting to new methods of communication, such as hearing aids, can be extremely difficult. Some feel there’s a stigma to wearing a hearing aid. This makes accepting and managing hearing loss more difficult than it has to be. Thankfully, there are many hearing loss communities you can join. Members of these groups are people of all ages and stages, and from all walks of life. They’re simply people who understand and empathize with your situation while empowering you with knowledge, encouragement, and their own experiences.
Take that important first step by joining a hearing loss network today.
Hearing Loss Communities: Why Join?
Hearing loss doesn’t have to be a scary thing. Knowing there are others worried about the same concerns makes hearing loss much easier to manage. Connecting with others experiencing a similar situation can help you form a positive outlook. Sharing symptoms, stories, and concerns with people in the same boat can be very helpful. Whether you’re looking for a live, in-person group, or prefer to connect with others from the comfort of your own home, you’ll be able to find a group that works for you. Hearing loss groups differ in what they offer and often have diverse memberships with a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. Joining a hearing loss community allows you to see the bigger picture, providing you with:
Support & Encouragement
Knowledge & Advice
Confidence & Inspiration
Friendship & Camaraderie
Inspiration & Positivity
These are just some of the many benefits you’ll receive from finding a hearing network. Having someone to discuss your hearing loss with who isn’t a doctor, family member, or friend, but just someone who understands what you are experiencing, can make all the difference. You can be that resource for someone else—it’s rewarding to affect someone’s life while you are improving your own.
How to Join a Hearing Loss Network
There are many hearing loss networks that exist, so locate the one that best fits your needs. If you’re looking for an in-person hearing loss support network, focus on local chapters near you. The Hearing Loss Association of America runs the largest network of support groups in the United Statesand has many state and local chapters led by trained and experienced volunteers.1 The chapters support hearing loss management and offer coping strategies. They support new technology, advocate for new laws, and spread hearing loss awareness. The AG Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is a worldwide organization that works to ensure that people who are deaf and hard of hearing can hear and talk. They provide support, information, resources, and more to help guide you.
Supportive Online Communities
If you’re unable to attend in-person meetings, or if a chapter is unavailable in your area, online networks are a great replacement or addition to your in-person support network. There are many online communities where you can find forums and join the discussion. You can also follow hearing blogs like ours to get the inside scoop on the latest hearing aid technologies and lifestyle tips. Some online support groups are:
Joining a hearing loss network is a simple and effective way to cope with hearing loss and gain confidence for your journey. These networks also help to fight the stigma around hearing loss and create awareness of the condition and its treatments. The National Institutes of Health reported that among adults aged 70 and older with hearing loss, less than one-third have ever used a hearing aid. The numbers are far worse for those in their 20s and 30s.2 Denial, lack of motivation, and fear all play into their reluctance in getting help. Moving past the fear and stigma is important because proper treatment is vital for your physical, emotional, and social well-being. Hearing loss networks are also a great way to learn about the latesthearing aid technologies and encourage people to more fully interact with the world around them.
Managing your hearing is not only about hearing better, but also about better understanding your hearing. Stay connected with us for helpful resources and the latest news about advanced hearing technology.