During the standard working years, many people build much of their perceived self-worth up around their occupation. Their self-image is frequently based on what job they have, their position, and how much they make.
When someone asks “so what do you do?”, what’s the first thing you think. It probably has something to do with what you do for a living.
It’s not enjoyable to consider what you would do if something took your career away. But there’s a career-buster out there that should make anybody who loves their work pay attention.
The troubling connection between job success and untreated hearing loss is precisely that livelihood killer.
Unemployment Rate is Higher With Untreated Hearing Loss
A person is over 200% more likely to be underemployed or unemployed if they have neglected hearing loss. If someone isn’t working full time or has marketable skills that their not making use of and their not making as much money as they should be, that’s defined as underemployed.
Those who have neglected hearing loss face many challenges in nearly any occupation. A doctor needs to hear her patients. A construction worker has to hear his co-workers in order to work together on a job. And without the ability to hear, even a librarian would find it difficult to help library patrons.
Many people work their entire lives in one line of work. They become quite 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 Loss Wage Gap
Somebody with hearing loss makes only around 75 cents to every dollar that someone with normal hearing earns. This wage gap is supported by numerous independent studies that reveal that a person loses up to $12,000 in income every year.
How much they lose strongly correlates with the extent of the hearing loss. According to a study conducted on 80,000 participants, even people with moderate hearing loss are potentially losing money.
What Challenges do Those Who Suffer From Hearing Loss Confront on The Job?
A person with neglected hearing loss is 5 times more likely to take a sick day as a result of job stress.
Being incapable of hearing causes additional stress that other workers don’t experience on a moment-to-moment basis. Picture having to concentrate on hearing and comprehending in team meetings while others simply take hearing for granted. And missing an essential piece of information is always a worry.
That’s even worse.
While on or off the job, it’s three times more likely that someone with neglected hearing loss will suffer from a fall. Your ability to work is impacted.
Somebody with untreated hearing loss is at an increased danger, in addition to job concerns, of the following:
- Social Isolation
All of this results in decreased productivity. People with hearing loss experience so many obstacles, both at work and in their personal lives, regrettably being passed over for a promotion is also a very real possibility.
Luckily, this sad career outlook has an upside.
A Career Strategy That Works
The unemployment and wage gap can be mitigated by wearing hearing aids according to some studies.
The wage gap can be erased by 90 – 100% for someone with minor hearing loss who wears hearing aids, as reported by a study conducted by Better Hearing Institute.
A person with moderate hearing loss can get rid of about 77% of the gap. That’s nearly the earning level of someone who has normal hearing.
Even though hearing loss can be corrected it’s not uncommon for people to ignore it during their working years. They feel that losing their hearing is embarrassing. They don’t want to seem “older” because of their hearing loss.
They may assume that hearing aids are simply too costly for them. Most likely, they’re not aware that hearing loss gets worse faster if left untreated, not to mention the previously discussed health concerns.
These studies are even more compelling when these common objections are taken into account. Not addressing your hearing loss may be costing you more than you know. It’s time to get a hearing exam if you’re trying to decide if you should use hearing aids at work. Contact us and we can help you decide whether hearing aids would help.