3 Ways Hearing Loss is Affecting Your Level of Activity
Hearing loss can happen to anyone at any age. With hearing loss comes many challenges, but you may need to also consider how it affects your physical activity level. Let's address why it's so important for you to remain physically active, three ways your hearing loss affects your activity level, and what you can do about it.
Exercise is a component of a healthy lifestyle. The many benefits of exercise include:
- Improved brain health.
- Enhanced sleep.
- Weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol management.
- Reduced risk of heart disease, some types of cancer, and diabetes.
Those with hearing loss can find a greater benefit from regular exercise as they are at a higher risk for:
- Memory loss.
- Developing a long-term physical or mental health condition.
For these reasons, maintaining physical activity levels is even more important if you have hearing loss.
1. Hearing Loss Can Make Participating in a Group Sport Difficult
A common way that many people get their exercise is through sports. Cycling, football, and jogging are group activities that are fun and beneficial to your physical and social health. However, with hearing loss, these activities can become complicated.
A person with hearing loss may be reluctant to cycle or jog in a crowded area for fear of an accident. Likewise, in team sports, communication with teammates is vital. Someone with hearing loss may feel embarrassed or inadequate when they cannot hear or communicate clearly with their teammates.
However, it is still just as important (or even more important) to get your exercise. Consider a sport requiring less communication, such as swimming, playing with other individuals with hearing loss, or using a hearing aid.
2. Hearing Loss Can Affect Your Physical Abilities
There are many physical symptoms associated with hearing loss, which could affect your level of physical abilities. Some of the common physical difficulties seen in those with hearing loss include:
- Balance problems
- Decreased physical functioning
- Cognitive decline
- Diminished endurance
Any of these factors may impact your activity levels. However, it is important to continue to exercise because these symptoms may worsen with a lack of physical activity.
3. Fitness and Gym Classes are Not Always Accessible
Unfortunately, yoga, cycling and other classes taught in gyms are not always accessible to those with hearing loss. To make such activities accessible, try the following:
- Speak to the instructor, trainer, or facility before class.
- Arrive early to secure an upfront spot to make it easier for you to receive instruction.
- Make sure that the environment is what you need—Request better lighting or visual cue cards to ensure you get the level of physical activity you require.
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