London: Deafness can lead to heated arguments between couples and even marital breakdown.
The hard-of-hearing partner often feels upset that the spouse does not understand what it is like to suffer from the condition, according to a survey about social consequences of hearing loss.
But the deaf person`s reluctance to do anything about it is also a major source of stress.
A third of respondents to the study, which questioned more than 1,000 people with deafness over age 40, said their inability to hear properly led to arguments with the family, reports a news daily.
One in 16 said their partner had even threatened to leave or divorce them unless they got their hearing sorted out.
Joan McKechnie, an audiologist with the firm HearingDirect.com, which carried out the survey, said the problem was that many people were `in denial`.