We often associate hearing loss with aging, but anyone can experience signs and symptoms that indicate a gradual or sudden deterioration. If you’re looking for ways to protect your hearing, or you think you might have started to experience hearing loss, here are some signs to look out for.
Asking people to repeat themselves
We’ve all been in situations where we’ve had to ask a friend or somebody we’ve met in a coffee shop or a store to repeat themselves, but if you find yourself doing this more frequently, it’s a good idea to have your hearing tested. If you feel like others are mumbling, or you have to concentrate to try and hear what people are saying to you, this could be a sign of hearing loss. Hearing tests will determine the extent of hearing loss and identify the best treatment options. It can be distressing to be told that your hearing is deteriorating, but there are incredible solutions available. People do experience hearing aid problems, especially at the beginning, but using hearing aids can have a really positive impact on confidence and wellbeing. In some cases, hearing loss is linked to treatable issues, for example, a build-up of earwax or an infection.
Turning up the volume on the TV or radio
Have people remarked that the TV is very loud when they visit you, or have you noticed that you’re turning up the radio every time you put it on? If the volume levels are increasing, or other people are suggesting that the level is high, but it seems normal to you, it’s advisable to book a hearing assessment.
When you have a face-to-face conversation with another person, you can listen to what they say as well as watching their lips form certain words. If you’re relying more on lip-reading because you can’t hear very well, this is symptomatic of hearing loss. Lip reading can be useful, but it’s important to seek expert advice, as you won’t always be able to see people when they’re talking to you. Using a hearing aid will enable you to follow and engage in conversation no matter where you are.
Struggling to hear in noisy environments
Even if your hearing is brilliant, it can be tricky to focus on a conversation or to listen to a podcast or the news headlines if there’s a lot of background noise. It’s understandable to experience difficulties with your hearing if you’re on a train, you’re in a busy office, or you’re trying to take a call in a cafe full of people. If you’re straining to hear when the level of background noise is low, you may need to think about getting your hearing checked out.
Hearing loss is common as you get older, but it can affect people of all ages. If you’re concerned about your hearing, or you’ve noticed some of the signs listed in this article, it’s a good idea to book a hearing test. If there are any problems, intervening early is usually the best course of action.