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Hearing Loss Rewires Your Brain

Updated: Jan 23, 2022

I watched a fascinating presentation by the ever-popular Dr James Jackson this week (my husband) on untreated hearing loss, detailing the importance of treating your hearing loss. The human brain is a fantastic thing, and it’s ability to adapt to new circumstances is something we are learning more and more about.

When you have a hearing loss, even a so-called ‘mild’ loss (which is enough to obliterate several essential speech sounds), the resources that were originally used to process that sound are taken away. The brain essentially rewires itself to make better use of the resources that aren’t being used any more.


It is interesting to note that this can result in people doing better at visual tasks. If you’ve heard of the old wives’ tale that your other senses get better when you lose one, well that’s actually true!

But the point is, that unless you keep using your hearing, and treat it with hearing aids, you will lose the ability to process sound effectively. In real life, this means that you’ll struggle to decipher words in background noise - at a much worse level than if you’d treated it promptly. You’ll suffer from reduced cognitive ability (thinking/processing skills). You’ll suffer from atrophy (brain shrinkage). You’ll be at risk of dementia.

I know that no one really wants hearing aids. I wear them too, I do understand. But the amazing gains from wearing them as soon as you need them are all there to see.

What are the reasons that we don’t want hearing aids? Usually it’s because we don’t want to accept the ageing process and we don’t want to look ‘old’. The latest private hearing aids are anything but ‘old’ looking! Gone are the days when we had to put up with whistling, shrieking, beige plastic. Today’s aids bring you rich, three-dimensional sound on a par with high quality speaker sound. They come in the tiniest sizes, the most beautiful metallic shades, the neatest fits. We can make them so you’d never know they were there, if that’s what you want.

I’m not bothered any more by people seeing my hearing aids (not that they ever have noticed them, since I went private). For me, I prize hearing ability and sound quality over size, but it doesn’t mean I don’t understand what drives other people’s choices.

If you are still putting off getting that hearing test and trying out hearing aids, book an appointment with me and I’ll take you through all your options. I promise you that you’ll be glad you did. People are relieved and happy once they’ve taken that step, and say they wish they’d done it years ago.

Great hearing is a great investment. And if you have NHS aids already, you’re going to appreciate it enormously. It is a world apart, living in that rich, beautiful world of sound that maybe you’ve forgotten existed. As I have told some of my customers, the first time I tried on my current hearing aids, I did actually cry. It was that good, and it was so different to how I’d been living before. One of my customers, Jim, says there’s no going back on these hearing aids, like Mercedes cars he says! Once you’ve experienced that quality you just don’t want to go back. I haven’t got a Mercedes, but I know what he means! Some things are just a one-way street.

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