How do you know if hearing loss is affecting your life? The answer isn’t always as obvious as you might think. For many people, hearing loss happens so gradually that they continue to think their hearing is fine, even when it’s not.
Regular checkups are the best way to know the condition of your hearing health. If you haven’t had a professional exam in a while, come in to our office for an evaluation.
To prepare for your appointment, we urge you to think about any signs of hearing loss you might recognize on your own. If you answer yes to any of these questions, and recognize these conditions or cues, write them down and bring your list with you when you come in for your hearing test. They are some of the most common symptoms of hearing loss and will help us diagnose you and develop a treatment plan that works for your lifestyle:
- Do other people frequently complain that your TV or radio is too loud?
- Do you have difficulty focusing on conversations in noisy situations, like restaurants, malls, and meetings?
- Do you have difficulty following conversations involving two or more people?
- Do you have trouble understanding someone if you are not standing face-to-face?
- Do everyday sounds sometimes seem muffled?
- Do you have particular difficulty hearing women’s and children’s voices?
- Do you sometimes give unrelated answers or comments to questions and conversations?
- Do you sometimes have a ringing sensation in your ears?
Hearing loss can be related to environmental and medical conditions. Do any of these apply to you?
- Exposure to loud sounds over a long period of time
- A single exposure to an explosive noise
- Diabetes, heart, circulatory, or thyroid conditions
- Family history of hearing loss
- Certain medications (ask your doctor or audiologist)
There are also emotional signs that you are having hearing difficulties. Do any of these describe feelings you are having?
- Feeling stressed out when listening to someone
- Frustration that people mumble or don’t speak up
- Embarrassment about not following conversations
- Feeling nervous that you won’t understand something
- Avoiding social situations
- Not enjoying being with people as much as you used to
You may be surprised to recognize some of these experiences and feelings as your own. If so, don’t be embarrassed — just get your hearing checked. Most people are pleased by how simple the diagnosis and treatment process can be and are delighted by what a difference it can make in their lives. Right now, there are tens of millions of Americans who could be helped by hearing aids.1You could be one of them.
So write down the symptoms, conditions, or cues above that have become part of your life, and get your hearing tested. If it turns out you do have hearing loss, we’ll discuss the available options to improve your overall hearing, your speech comprehension, your emotional connections to friends and family, and your enjoyment of the sounds of everyday life.
Complete your list and set up an appointment with us today. You have nothing to lose and so much life to gain.
1. NIDCD Epidemiology and Statistics Program, based on December 2015 Census Bureau estimates of the noninstitutionalized U.S. population, personal communication; May 2016.