Attention Boomers: Don’t Fall Down and Break an Ear

May is Don’t Break a Hip Month.

It’s also “Things Get Eary When You’re a Boomer” Month.


I use Energizer batteries in my hearing aid (when I wear them.) They sent me some propaganda that came from study they did on how not hearing affects adult kids.

No surprises here, unless you have a hearing loss and won’t admit it.

The survey found that nearly half of adult children surveyed (45 percent) said a parent’s hearing loss has had an effect on the relationship they have with that parent.

Here’s what they found:

  1. Hearing loss hinders relationships. Nearly half of adult children surveyed (45 percent) said a parent’s hearing loss has had an effect on the relationship they have with that parent. One in three (36 percent) said their parent misses important details about their lives; while nearly one in ten (9 percent) said they don’t communicate or share information with their parent as much as they would like to because hearing loss gets in the way.
  2. Putting appearance before family? Although 72 percent of boomers said their hearing loss has affected the relationship they have with their adult children, only 11 percent choose to wear a hearing aid. Reasons for NOT wearing a hearing aid? One in three boomers said they don’t like the way hearing aids look or feel and they believe the device will make them look or feel older than they really are.
  3. Do as I say, not as I do. More than 80 percent of boomers said it was extremely or very important for their adult child to have their hearing checked; however less than half (42 percent) of boomers surveyed had their own hearing screened within the past two years.
  4. Dad, can you hear me now? More than four out of ten adult children (44 percent) said their parent needs a hearing aid.
  5. You’ve got to see it to believe it. When it comes to having a visual impairment, nearly all of the boomers polled (99 percent) said they wear glasses/contacts all the time or for specific tasks; whereas only 11 percent wear a hearing aid to correct their hearing impairment.

Here’s what I’ve found:

#1. True. Except I’m never around them, and when we are, we just tolerate each other’s quirks and health problems until they (or we) go home. And friends never would ever bring up something so personal.

#2. If you can afford the really tiny hearing aids, people really don’t know you are wearing them until they look closely.

#3. Yeah, Boomers are famous for thinking more about others than they do themselves. But younger boomers have been exposed (and are exposed to more dangerous sound levels over a longer period of time — hello iPod!)

#4. In my case, since my hearing lose is from Tinnitus there really isn’t any gain from wearing hearing aids. It was just a shot that by increasing desirable sounds, the undesirable sound may seem less intrusive.

#5. It’s like snoring. Boomers can’t hear themselves snore so they don’t admit it.  AND — this is a biggie, it’s a helluva lot more expensive to wear hearing aids than it is eyeglasses. I can buy a fairly fashionable pair of frames for $150.  The hearing aids I wear set me back six grand. That was a huge waste.  Comparing eyeglasses to hearing aids is like comparing crutches to a Hoveround.

So there it is. Get your hearing checked. You never know what’s being said behind your back.

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