Purpose: To assess the daily life consequences of hearing loss in older adults and to explore the influences of hearing loss, subjective assessment of health and general life satisfaction, gender, age and marital status.
Method: Eighty-four participants, each older than 65 years, were consecutively recruited from a hospital waiting list for outpatient hearing aid fitting. All participants were assessed by pure-tone audiometry. Daily life consequences of hearing loss were measured using the Hearing Disability and Handicap Scale, which assesses perceived activity limitation and participation restriction. Another questionnaire was used to measure self-assessed health and life satisfaction.
Results: Adjusted linear regression analysis showed that activity limitation was significantly associated with increased hearing loss (p = 0.028) and decreased health (p = 0.009), and participation restriction with lower estimated life satisfaction (p ≤ 0.001). Gender, age and marital status were not determinant factors for perceived activity limitation or participation restriction.
Conclusions: Daily life consequences of hearing loss, health conditions and general life satisfaction are closely related. These findings indicate that health factors and psychosocial aspects should be emphasised as a natural part of audiological rehabilitation.