Is hearing loss affecting your relationship?

Is your loved one having trouble participating in the conversation? Do you often have to repeat yourself to be heard? Is whispering sweet nothings a thing of the past?

If so, your partner may have hearing loss.

As the fastest growing and third most prevalent chronic health problem in Canada, hearing loss affects 10 per cent of the overall population and more significantly, 50 per cent of those over the age of 65. So perhaps it’s no coincidence that, according to Statistics Canada, the average age of divorced couples in Canada is 42 years of age, an 11 per cent rise over the past 15 years.

ListenUP! Canada’s Chief Audiologist, Kate Dekok explains that, “Untreated hearing loss diminishes one’s quality of life. The inability to properly hear what’s going on and be fully involved with others usually makes those who have a hearing loss feel embarrassed and frustrated. This can cause a great deal of personal stress and strain on relationships.”

Most couples agree that communication is a key factor to having a successful relationship. In fact, studies show that those who are in denial about their own hearing loss will often take their first step to seeking treatment when they are encouraged to do so by a partner or spouse. “What people with hearing loss don’t realize is that their condition not only affects them, but all of those around them, including their partner or spouse,” remarks Dekok.

So how should you address the issue? Dekok offers the following advice:

•  Gently broach the subject by asking them: “Do you sometimes find it difficult to follow the conversation?”

•  Be prepared to make a specific suggestion such as: “Let’s both go for a hearing check up… it’s free and easy.”

•  Go together, with your loved one, for a hearing check up and any follow-up appointments;

Hearing aidsListenUP! Canada offers hearing checkups free of charge. All it takes is an easy, 15 minute, appointment. The latest digital hearing aids are small and generally hidden from view, comfortable to wear and easy to use. Most importantly, they provide natural sound quality so that users can communicate normally and even hear the sounds they have might have missed – like listening to music.

ListenUP! Canada is Ontario’s leading provider of hearing aids, with over 80 locations and 100 registered hearing healthcare professionals on staff to serve you. Also more doctors refer patients to ListenUP! than anywhere else. Their mission is to provide individuals who have a hearing loss with the most professional, comprehensive and convenient hearing healthcare products and services needed to enhance the quality of their lives through better hearing.

For more information visit their website at or call toll-free 1-800-331-9180.