4 Ways to Overcome Listening Fatigue

There are plenty of side effects of hearing loss, ranging from the inconvenient to severe.

One that is most often overlooked or attributed to other causes is fatigue.

Studies have shown that those with hearing loss can often feel more tired because of the extra effort they are expending in trying to hear.

This week, we’ll be discussing how and why hearing loss can make you feel more tired and give you a few ways to help minimize the exhaustion.

What is Listening Fatigue

We often think of listening as a passive experience. In order to hear, you just sit there, the sound comes in our ears and we hear it. 

That’s it. 

What’s actually going on behind the scenes though is as much a complex mental process as it is a physical one. The sound vibrations travel through the different parts of our ears and the brain then translates those vibrations into recognizable sounds. 

For someone with normal hearing, this is usually a fairly effortless process. With hearing loss, however, it takes far more concentration as you focus and struggle to understand what you’re hearing. This is called listening fatigue and is caused by using far more cognitive resources. Listening fatigue can leave you feeling drained and tired without really knowing why.

Fortunately, there are ways to help combat this effect.

4 Ways to Reduce Listening Fatigue

  1. Take a Mental Break
    If you find yourself getting stressed out and overwhelmed from trying to listen or communicate, the best thing to do is to just take a break. Some quiet time coupled with deep breathing exercises or meditation can help restore some of your energy and give your brain the time and space to recover.
  2. Reduce Background Noise
    Whenever possible, reducing background noise can go a long way to help lower the amount of effort you’re using in trying to hear. This might mean turning off or lowering other sources of sound like televisions or radios (if possible). Likewise, if you’re in a restaurant, asking if it's possible to sit in a quieter area can help reduce listening fatigue.
  3. Choose Quieter Activities
    If you’ve spent the day talking with people, giving your brain a rest can be just the thing to reduce your fatigue levels. This might mean choosing to read instead of watching TV or taking a walk to re-energize yourself rather than doing anything that requires listening.
  4. Wear a Properly Fitted Hearing Aid
    One of the most effective ways to reduce listening fatigue is by giving your hearing a boost with a properly fitted hearing aid like the Vibe Air. For those with mild to moderate hearing loss, a hearing aid can help assist at the frequencies you struggle most with hearing and reduce the effort it takes to listen thus reducing the cognitive load on your brain.


There you have it! 

Four ways to stop feeling so tired because you’re struggling to hear. If you’re curious about exploring the option of getting your first hearing aid, get in touch with one of our partners today.


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