During the typical working years, many people build much of their perceived self-worth up around their job. They base their self-image on what type of job they do, what position they have, and how much they earn.
When somebody asks “so what do you do?”, what’s the first thing that comes to mind. It probably has something to do with what you do for a living.
People don’t want to have to think about what they’d do if their livelihood was hindered. But there’s a career-buster out there that should make anyone who loves putting in a good day’s work pay attention.
That career killer is the troublesome link between neglected hearing loss and career success.
Unemployment Rate is Higher With Untreated Hearing Loss
Someone with untreated hearing trouble is over 200% more likely to be unemployed or underemployed. If a person 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 with neglected hearing loss face countless challenges in almost any occupation. Doctors need to be able to hear their patients. A construction worker needs to hear his co-workers in order to work together on a job. Even a librarian would find it difficult to help library patrons without her hearing.
Lots of individuals stay in the same line of work their whole lives. They know it very well. For them, if they can’t hear well, it would be hard to switch to a different job and make a respectable living.
The Wage Gap Caused by Hearing Loss
In addition to unemployment, those with hearing loss all have the tendency to suffer a significant wage gap, making about 75 cents for every dollar a person with normal hearing earns. This wage gap is backed by many independent studies that show that an individual loses up to $12,000 in wages each year.
How much they lose strongly correlates with the extent of the hearing impairment. Even individuals with moderate hearing loss are potentially losing money, according to a study of 80,000 people.
What Struggles do Those With Hearing Loss Face on The Job?
A person with untreated hearing loss is 5 times more likely to take a sick day caused by job stress.
Being unable to hear causes added stress that peers don’t experience on a moment-to-moment basis. Envision being in a meeting and straining to hear while everyone else is taking their hearing for granted. Now imagine the anxiety of missing something significant.
That’s even worse.
While on or off the job, it’s three times more likely that someone with untreated hearing loss will suffer from a fall. Both impact your ability to do the work.
On top of on the job issues, individuals with untreated hearing loss are at increased danger of:
- Social Isolation
All of this adds up to reduced productivity. People with hearing loss experience so many challenges, both at work and in their personal lives, unfortunately being passed over for a promotion is also a very real possibility.
Thankfully, there’s a really bright upside to this dismal career outlook.
A Career Approach That Works
Studies also reveal that getting hearing loss treated can eliminate the unemployment and the wage gap.
According to a Better Hearing Institute study, a person with mild hearing loss who wears hearing aids can get rid of the wage gap by as much as 90-100%.
A person with moderate hearing loss can eliminate about 77% of the gap. That gets them almost up to the income of an individual in the same job with normal hearing.
In spite of this positive news, many individuals leave their hearing loss untreated during those working years. They may 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 neglected, not to mention the previously mentioned health concerns.
These studies are even more compelling when these common objections are taken into consideration. Not dealing with your hearing loss might be costing you more than you know. It’s time to have a hearing exam if you’re trying to decide if you should use hearing aids at work. Call us and we can help you decide whether hearing aids would help.