During the standard working years, many individuals build much of their perceived self-worth up around their job. Their self-image is often based on what job they have, their position, and how much they make.
When somebody asks “so what do you do?”, what’s the first thing that comes to mind. It’s most likely to tell them about what you do for a living.
People don’t like to have to think about what they’d do if their livelihood was hindered. But there’s a career-breaker out there that should make anybody who loves putting in a good day’s work pay attention.
The troubling connection between job success and untreated hearing loss is precisely that career killer.
Unemployment Rate is Higher With Untreated Hearing Loss
Someone with untreated hearing problems is over 200% more likely to be underemployed or unemployed. If a person isn’t working full time or has marketable skills that their not making use of and their not earning as much money as they should be, that’s defined as underemployed.
Those who have untreated hearing loss face lots of obstacles in nearly any occupation. A doctor needs to hear her patients. A construction worker needs to hear his co-workers in order to work with each other on a job. And without the ability to hear, even a librarian would find it hard to help library patrons.
Lots of individuals stay in the same occupation their whole lives. They know it really well. For them, if they can’t hear well, it would be hard to switch to a different career and make a decent living.
The Wage Gap Caused by Hearing Loss
Someone with hearing loss makes only around 75 cents to every dollar that somebody with normal hearing earns. Numerous independent studies back this wage gap and show that that gap averages out at about $12,000 lost wages every year.
How much they lose directly correlates with the extent of the hearing impairment. According to a study conducted on 80,000 individuals, even people with moderate hearing loss are potentially losing money.
What Struggles do Individuals With Hearing Loss Deal With on The Job?
Someone with neglected hearing loss is 5 times more likely to take a sick day caused by job stress.
Being unable to hear causes added stress that other workers don’t experience on a moment-to-moment basis. Picture having to focus on hearing and understanding in team meetings while others simply take hearing for granted. Now think about the anxiety of missing something important.
That’s even more stressful.
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.
Someone with untreated hearing loss is at an increased danger, in addition to job concerns, of the following:
- Social Isolation
Reduced productivity is the consequence of all this. And given the obstacles that a person suffering from hearing loss experiences at work and in life, they may also not be considered for an upcoming promotion.
Luckily, this sad career prospect has an upside.
A Career Solution That Works
Studies also show that getting hearing loss treated can get rid of the unemployment and the wage gap.
According to a Better Hearing Institute study, somebody with mild hearing loss who uses hearing aids can get rid of the wage gap by as much as 90-100%.
About 77% of that gap can be mitigated for a person with moderate hearing loss. That gets them nearly up to the income of a person in the same job with normal hearing.
In spite of this positive news, many people fail to treat their hearing loss during those working years. They might feel self-conscious about losing their hearing. They don’t want to seem “older” because of their hearing loss.
They may assume that hearing aids are just too expensive for them. Most likely, they’re not aware that hearing loss gets worse faster if left untreated, not to mention the previously discussed health challenges.
These studies are even more compelling when these common objections are taken into account. Leaving your hearing untreated is likely more costly than you know. If you’ve been on the fence about wearing hearing aids at work, it’s time to have a hearing assessment. Contact us so we can help you make that decision.