Positive Social Interaction and Hearing Loss in Older Adults Living in Rural and Urban Communities Purpose This study explored the extent to which hearing loss affected positive social interactions in older adults living in rural and urban communities. Method Pure-tone behavioral hearing assessments were administered to 80 adults 60 years of age or older. In addition, all participants completed 2 questionnaires, the Medical ... Research Note
Research Note  |   August 08, 2018
Positive Social Interaction and Hearing Loss in Older Adults Living in Rural and Urban Communities
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Marcia J. Hay-McCutcheon
    Department of Communicative Disorders, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
  • Paul E. Reed
    Department of Communicative Disorders, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
  • Spyridoula Cheimariou
    Department of Communicative Disorders, The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Marcia J. Hay-McCutcheon: mhaymccu@ua.edu
  • Editor-in-Chief: Frederick (Erick) Gallun
    Editor-in-Chief: Frederick (Erick) Gallun×
  • Editor: Jennifer Lentz
    Editor: Jennifer Lentz×
Article Information
Hearing / Research Notes
Research Note   |   August 08, 2018
Positive Social Interaction and Hearing Loss in Older Adults Living in Rural and Urban Communities
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2018, Vol. 61, 2138-2145. doi:10.1044/2018_JSLHR-H-17-0485
History: Received January 2, 2018 , Revised March 3, 2018 , Accepted April 23, 2018
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2018, Vol. 61, 2138-2145. doi:10.1044/2018_JSLHR-H-17-0485
History: Received January 2, 2018; Revised March 3, 2018; Accepted April 23, 2018

Purpose This study explored the extent to which hearing loss affected positive social interactions in older adults living in rural and urban communities.

Method Pure-tone behavioral hearing assessments were administered to 80 adults 60 years of age or older. In addition, all participants completed 2 questionnaires, the Medical Outcomes Study Social Support Survey (Sherbourne & Stewart, 1991) and the Patient Health Questionnaire–Ninth Edition (Kroenke, Spitzer, & Williams, 2001).

Results The preliminary findings suggested that adults with hearing loss living in rural towns had poorer positive social interactions compared with their urban counterparts with hearing loss. Also, adults with hearing loss living in rural towns had more symptoms of depression than adults with normal hearing who lived in these same geographical regions.

Conclusions These preliminary findings could indicate that older adults with hearing loss living in rural communities will face more isolation than adults with hearing loss living in urban settings. Increasing our understanding of the extent of social isolation in adults with hearing loss living in rural and urban populations will be necessary.

Acknowledgments
The first author would like to thank the College of Arts and Sciences at The University of Alabama, which provided funding for this project. The authors would also like to acknowledge the graduate and undergraduate students, Adriana Hyams, Brianna Panasiuk, Sarah Ondocsin, Mary Margaret James, and Katie Palmer, who helped to collect data.
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