What Is Auditory Deprivation, and How Can It Be Dangerous?

Illustration of brain to highlight the importance of preventing auditory deprivation

Some people, particularly the elderly, treat faded hearing as a normal consequence of ageing. While this can be true, there are also instances where degrading hearing could mean other things. If you notice any problems in your hearing or subtle signs of hearing loss, such as needing increased volume from your TV or asking your grandkids to repeat what they just said, consider having your ears checked to understand the real cause of the problem. It may be a case of brain shrinkage caused by auditory deprivation.


Introducing Auditory Deprivation: Understanding What It Is

Auditory deprivation refers to the state wherein your brain no longer recognizes, understands, and processes the information it receives because parts of it lack stimulation. This condition usually stems from untreated hearing loss.

When not addressed or treated immediately, the brain can lose the ability to process sound. When that function slows down until it is no longer performing, that part will ultimately shrink due to lack of usage. In some cases, the part responsible for the job would be reassigned to other tasks.

The sad truth is that auditory deprivation can happen to anyone experiencing hearing loss, whether it is a mild or severe case.


Seek Hearing Treatment Immediately

Your brain can only do so much. If it gets used to hearing loss, it is challenging to reverse the effects or stimulate the area again.

Think about an athlete who has not used his legs in months. When the marathon arrives, it is more likely that he will not win or even finish the race because he has not used his leg muscles in a while. The legs can no longer function as before because they have atrophied. The same thing could happen to your ears and hearing.

Do not wait until your brain is no longer familiar with the function. Talk to an audiologist immediately should you notice any problems with your hearing. It might be hard to determine when but here are some helpful signs:

  • You hear people speak but cannot clearly understand what they are saying.
  • You listen to sounds but cannot hear every word spoken.
  • You are having problems processing people’s speeches.

The earlier you get diagnosed, the better success there is in preserving your hearing. Meanwhile, the longer you ignore your condition, the harder it would be for you to communicate and hear other people’s voices. A hearing screening every ten years could help you diagnose the situation early.

Furthermore, once you get diagnosed and prescribed a hearing loss treatment, make sure to follow your doctor’s advice. Otherwise, your situation could worsen beyond treatment.



Keep in mind that the ears are there for hearing, but the experience involves brain activity. Your ears only deliver the sound to your brain, and it is the brain that recognizes it as sound. When you experience auditory deprivation, only a few sounds will make it to the brain. The fewer sounds your brain analyzes, the higher the chance you lose brain functionality.

As soon as you notice any signs of hearing loss, make sure to go to an audiologist in Langley, BC. At Beltone Hearing Centre, we provide hearing tests and diagnosis. Our only goal is to make your hearing so natural that listening becomes a pleasurable activity again.



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