During the normal working years, many individuals build a lot of their perceived self-worth up around their job. They base their self-image on what kind of job they have, what position they have, and how much they make.
When someone asks “so what do you do?”, what’s the first thing you think. It’s most likely to tell them about what you do for a living.
It’s not pleasant to consider what you would do if something took your living away. But there’s a career-buster out there that should make anybody who loves their work perk up and listen.
The troubling connection between career success and neglected hearing loss is precisely that livelihood killer.
Untreated Hearing Loss Raises Unemployment Rates
Someone with neglected hearing trouble is over 200% more likely to be unemployed or underemployed. If somebody isn’t working full time or has marketable skills that their not using and their not making as much money as they should be, that’s defined as underemployed.
Those with untreated hearing loss face lots of challenges in nearly any occupation. Doctors need to be capable of hearing their patients. If they’re going to efficiently work together, construction workers need to be able to communicate. And without the ability to hear, even a librarian would find it hard to help library patrons.
Many individuals work their whole lives in one occupation. They become extremely good at what they do. If they can no longer do that job well because of neglected hearing loss, it’s difficult to make a living doing something else.
The Potential Hearing Impairment Wage Gap
In addition to unemployment, those with hearing impairment all tend to experience a substantial wage gap, making around 75 cents for every dollar somebody with normal hearing makes. Many independent studies support this wage gap and demonstrate that that gap averages out at around $12,000 lost wages per year.
How much they lose closely correlates with the extent of the hearing impairment. Even individuals with moderate hearing loss are potentially losing money, based on a study of 80,000 people.
What Are Some on The Job Struggles That Individuals With Hearing Loss Deal With?
A person with neglected hearing loss is 5 times more likely to take a sick day caused by job stress.
From moment to moment, somebody with hearing loss copes with stresses that co-workers never recognize. Envision being in a meeting and straining to hear while everybody else is taking their hearing for granted. And missing out on an essential piece of information is always a worry.
That’s even more stressful.
While on or off the job, it’s three times more likely that someone with untreated hearing loss will suffer from a fall. Your ability to work is impacted.
On top of on the job concerns, individuals with neglected hearing loss are at increased risk of:
- Social Isolation
All of this adds up to reduced productivity. People who have hearing loss experience so many difficulties, both at work and in their personal lives, unfortunately being passed over for a promotion is also a very real possibility.
Fortunately, this sad career outlook has a silver lining.
A Career Solution That Works
Studies also reveal that having your hearing loss treated can get rid of the unemployment and the wage gap.
The wage gap can be decreased by 90 – 100% for a person with mild hearing loss who uses hearing aids, as revealed by a study carried out by Better Hearing Institute.
About 77% of that gap can be removed for somebody with moderate hearing loss. That gets them almost up to the earning of a person in the same job with normal hearing.
Even though hearing loss can be managed it’s not uncommon for people to ignore it during their working years. They might feel self-conscious about losing their hearing. They don’t want to appear “older” because of their hearing loss.
They may think that hearing aids are simply too expensive for them. They probably don’t realize that if hearing loss is left untreated, it worsens more quickly in addition to causing the other health concerns mentioned above.
Considering these common objections, these studies hold additional significance. Leaving your hearing untreated is probably more expensive than you realize. If you’ve been undecided about using hearing aids at work, it’s time to get a hearing test. Give us a call and we can help you determine whether hearing aids would help.