You may think it’d be evident, but hearing loss will be gradual, so how can one know if they have it? There is no sharp pain to function as a warning signal. You do not collapse or make extra trips to the restroom once it happens, either. It is safe to say the symptoms of hearing loss are more subtle than other age-related illnesses like diabetes or heart disease.
Even so, there are indicators if you know what to look for. It’s a matter of paying attention to how you hear and the effect any change could be having on your life. Take the time to consider the ways you can pinpoint hearing loss for you or someone you love.
You Notive a Change in Your Conversations
The impact on socialization offers some of the most telling indications. As an example, if the first thing out of your mouth through most discussions is “what?” That should be a sign you are not understanding words easily. Asking the people you speak to tell you again what they said is something they’re likely to notice before you do, too, so pay attention to the way folks respond to having discussions with you.
When speaking to a group of two or more individuals, you might have trouble keeping track of things. You are missing parts of what each person says, thus you are not part of the conversation. You can’t ask everybody speaking to echo themselves, either, so you only get lost. As time passes, you hide from group discussions or stand there not listening to what is said, since it is just too confusing once you do.
The Background Noise Takes Over
If all you hear nowadays is background sound, then it is time to get a hearing exam. This is a common symptom of hearing loss since you are not able to filter out sounds just like a fan blowing off, or an air conditioner operating. It gets to the point at which you can’t hear what people are saying to you because it becomes lost in the background noise.
The TV Creeps Up and Doesn’t Stop
It is easy to blame the need to flip the TV volume up on that dying set because of a noisy area, but if it occurs every day, it is probably an indication of gradual hearing loss. When everybody else starts complaining that you’ve got the TV or computer volume up too high, you need to wonder why this really is, and, probably, come to terms with the fact that your hearing isn’t like it was at one time.
You End up Watching Their Mouth
Lip reading is a coping mechanism for missed words. Gradual hearing loss starts with the loss of hard sounds. Words that contain specific letters will be faulty. Your mind might automatically shift your eyes to the individual’s lips to fix the problem. Chances are you won’t even understand you do it until somebody points it out or unexpectedly seems uncomfortable when speaking with you.
You Hear a Buzzing
It can be a ringing, clicking or buzz or the noise of breeze in your ears — that is called tinnitus, and it is a sign of significant hearing loss. These sounds are not real, but phantom sounds that just you hear. For some people, they are just bothersome, but for many others tinnitus is debilitating. If you’ve got that, then you surely have hearing loss that you will need to address.
Hearing problems aren’t always evident to the individual experiencing them, but it is to others. Listen to what your loved ones are telling you about your hearing. Consider, too, other medical problems that may contribute to this problem such as hypertension or medication you have been prescribed that could damage your ears and find out if age-related hearing loss is a hereditary problem you should be worried about.
It is like assembling the puzzle pieces. When you do come to that decision, see your doctor and receive a professional hearing test for affirmation. Hearing loss is not the worst health issue you could have, but for most, it does imply it’s time to consider hearing aids.