Essential health information is missed by around 43% of patients over the age of 60, according to recent research. At a time when following medical advice is so crucial, patients might be missing major details related to their care.
Hearing Loss – A Worldwide Epidemic
Hearing loss is a major problem. Worldwide, one third of people who are 65 or older have disabling hearing loss.
But astoundingly, if we look a little closer we find that only 30% of those people who suffer from disabling hearing loss have taken steps to better their situation. This trend isn’t good news for medical care as we’ll illustrate next.
With Medical Care – Communication is Essential
Miscommunication is one of the leading causes of medical errors, and medical errors are still a leading cause of death. A report from Harvard showed that up to 37% of serious injuries that resulted from medical errors could have been prevented with better communication. Lives could be saved if essential information could be better communicated with patients.
How Medical Care is Impacted by Hearing Loss
Statistics can be a little fuzzy and intangible so let’s consider some significant info you might miss when speaking with doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other medical professionals.
With regards to reaching health objectives, the advice of health care professionals is a vital element. Perhaps they’re explaining healthy insulin or blood pressure levels. They may tell you to stay away from certain foods to prevent spikes in these levels that can do you harm. You might be missing important pieces of advice that would help you manage your condition.
These medical providers may explain danger zones that indicate that you require medical care. If you don’t understand completely what the physician is saying, you may miss crucial warning signs and delay getting assistance.
There might be crucial details about dangerous side effects of medications which your pharmacist is attempting to warn you about. You think you heard everything but you miss an important detail and wind up hospitalized.
Your physical therapist puts you on a strength-building regimen but warns you against a certain activity. You could suffer a serious fall because you missed that recommendation.
Why discussing Medical Details is Especially Challenging
Putting medical information in the proper context is especially challenging. When you miss some piece of information because of your hearing loss, you use context to attempt to fill in what you missed. Compensating for hearing loss is something that your brain is in fact pretty good at. You might even come to believe that you heard something that you really didn’t hear, it’s that good at compensating.
The meaning of a sentence can be entirely changed, when dealing with medical information, with something as basic as a “don’t” or “not”. A danger zone, goal, or dosage, might be
entirely changed with one missed number.
In medical care the smallest details make a big difference. When those small details are missed, it can lead to serious medical problems.
Getting Assistance For Hearing Loss
If you have hearing loss, you could be missing vital medical advice. Now is the time to take the appropriate steps to conserve your hearing.