55 Plus is a publication of the Times Colonist, providing items of interest to seniors and their families across Vancouver Island

Will wearing hearing aids make my ears lazy?

Hearing aids are incredible technological devices.
To comprehend why hearing aids do not make the ears lazy, it is essential to understand their function.

I’ve been an audiologist for 32 years and over those years, one misconception that I deal with weekly, if not daily, is that wearing hearing aids will result in ‘lazy ears’. Hearing aids are incredible technological devices that have transformed the lives of millions of individuals with hearing loss. Let’s debunk this myth and give hearing aids the credit they are due.

Understanding the Function of Hearing Aids:
To comprehend why hearing aids do not make the ears lazy, it is essential to understand their function. Hearing aids work by capturing sound waves, processing them to maximize speech clarity, and delivering the amplified sound to the wearer’s ears.

Hearing Aid Benefits:
1. Amplification: Hearing aids help individuals hear sounds they would otherwise miss due to hearing loss. By giving the wearer access to the sounds, hearing aids improve communication, enhance quality of life, and reduce social isolation.

2. Speech Perception: Hearing aids improve speech perception by making speech sounds more audible and distinct. This enables individuals to better understand conversations, participate in social interactions, and maintain cognitive function.

3. Auditory Stimulation: Hearing aids provide crucial auditory stimulation to the ears and the brain. By amplifying sounds, they keep the auditory system active and engaged, preventing auditory deprivation and reducing the risk of cognitive decline.

4. Brain Plasticity: The brain has an incredible ability to adapt and rewire itself, known as neuroplasticity. When individuals with hearing loss use hearing aids, the brain receives consistent auditory input, stimulating neural pathways and maintaining cognitive function.

The Myth of “Lazy Ears”:
The notion that hearing aids make the ears lazy is based on the misunderstanding that the ears become dependent on the amplification provided by the devices. In fact, hearing aids do not make the ears lazy; they are invaluable tools that stimulate the auditory system to help prevent it from forgetting how to do its job!

Whether you are just looking for a basic hearing test, or you are struggling with communication and are ready to find out about treatment options, call 778-426-4876 to set up your consultation with one of the experienced audiologists at Hear Inc.

Donna M. Stewart Audiologist/Owner Hear Inc.

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