When people are at an age where they are still working, their job is often a big part of their self-worth. Their self-image is often based on what job they have, their position, and their pay.
What’s the first thing you think when someone asks, “So what do you do”? It’s most likely to tell them about what you do for a living.
People don’t want to have to think about what they’d do if their job was hindered. But there’s a career-breaker out there that should make anyone who loves putting in a good day’s work pay attention.
That livelihood killer is the disturbing link between neglected hearing loss and career success.
Untreated Hearing Loss Raises Unemployment Rates
Someone with untreated hearing problems is over 200% more likely to be underemployed or unemployed. If someone isn’t working full time or has marketable capabilities that their not making use of and their not making as much as they should be, that’s defined as underemployed.
In nearly any career, individuals with neglected hearing loss experience many challenges. A doctor needs to hear her patients. A construction worker has 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 people remain in the same occupation their whole lives. They know it really well. For them, if they can’t hear well, it would be difficult to switch to a different job and make a decent living.
The Wage Gap Caused by Hearing Loss
Along with unemployment, those with hearing loss all tend to suffer a significant wage gap, making around 75 cents for every dollar a person with normal hearing earns. Many independent studies support 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 loss. Even individuals with moderate hearing loss are potentially losing money, according to a study of 80,000 people.
What Are Some on The Job Challenges That Individuals With Hearing Loss Deal With?
Job stress causes somebody with hearing loss to take sick days 5 times more frequently than somebody with normal hearing.
Being unable to hear causes added stress that other workers don’t endure on a moment-to-moment basis. Picture being in a meeting and straining to hear while everybody else is taking their hearing for granted. And missing a crucial piece of information is always a worry.
That’s even worse.
While on or off the job, it’s three times more likely that somebody with neglected hearing loss will have a fall. Both impact your ability to do the work.
Someone with neglected hearing loss is at an increased danger, in addition to job challenges, 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, there’s a really bright silver lining to this dismal career outlook.
An Effective Career Strategy
Studies also reveal that getting hearing loss treated can get rid of the unemployment and the wage gap.
According to a Better Hearing Institute study, a person with slight hearing loss who wears hearing aids can get rid of the wage gap by as much as 90-100%.
About 77% of that gap can be eliminated for someone with moderate hearing loss. That’s nearly the earning level of somebody who has normal hearing.
Despite this positive news, many people fail to treat their hearing loss during those working years. They might feel self-conscious about losing their hearing. It makes them feel old.
Hearing aids might seem too expensive. Most likely, they don’t know that hearing loss gets worse faster if left untreated, not to mention the previously mentioned health challenges.
Considering these common objections, these studies hold additional significance. Leaving your hearing unaddressed is probably more costly than you recognize. If you’ve been on the fence about wearing hearing aids at work, it’s time to get a hearing assessment. Contact us so we can help you make that decision.