Self-stigma and age-related hearing loss: A qualitative study of stigma formation and dimensions

Dana David, Gil Zoizner, Perla Werner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: This study explored experiences of self-stigma among older persons with age-related hearing loss (ARHL) using Corrigan’s conceptualization of self-stigma process formation and the attribution model as its theoretical framework. Method: In-depth semistructured interviews were conducted with 11 older persons (mean age = 81 years) with ARHL. Results: Self-stigma was present in the lives of the participants. Analysis revealed the existence of 3 stages of self-stigma in which the 3 core dimensions of stigma (cognitive attributions: being old, stupid, and crippled; emotional reactions: shame, pity, and feeling ridiculed; and behavioral reactions: concealment, distancing, and adapting to hearing aids) were observed. Hearing devices emerged as having a significant influence on stigmatic experiences in all stages and dimensions of self-stigma. Conclusion: The study contributes to the theoretical and practical understanding of self-stigma regarding ARHL as well as to the understanding of the role of hearing devices in the development of this stigma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-136
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Audiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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