As people age, hearing loss is often a natural part of the process. It can be attributed to a number of different factors, including everything from genetics, to overexposure to loud noises, to simple aging. A new study shows that this change can cause a shift in personality as well.
The study followed the behaviors of 400 individuals between the ages of 80 and 98 years old. Participants were assessed a total of four times at two-year intervals. Their personalities were all documented as well as aspects of their physical and mental health. The researchers specifically monitored their degree of extraversion, which is directly linked to their tendencies towards being outgoing, as well as their emotional stability.
The results of the study showed that those who suffered from a loss of hearing underwent a change in personality. Even those who remained emotionally stable became less outgoing as a result in the change of hearing capabilities. Researchers were sure to consider other age-related changes, such as those related to cognitive function or level of physical abilities.
This research, considered to be the first of its kind, shows just how urgent it is for older individuals and their concerned family members to learn about hearing aid options and how they can enhance quality of life.