It’s not like you just wake up one day, and suddenly can’t hear. For most people, hearing loss progresses in degrees, especially when it is associated with the aging process. You might not recognize it’s occurring immediately but some indicators do appear earlier.
These early developing symptoms progress very subtly. Recognizing them sooner is essential to delay the progression of hearing loss or other health problems related to aging. However, you can’t recognize the signs if you have no clue what they are. You might be developing hearing loss if you notice any of the following eight barely noticeable indicators.
1. You hear some people just fine but not others
Maybe when you talk to your brother, you can hear him fine, but when your wife talks, some words just seem to get lost. It’s a common indication that the nerves that send signals to the brain are damaged (called sensorineural hearing loss).
Her voice is a higher pitch, and that’s why it isn’t as clear. You may have the same problem with your grandchild or daughter. Even higher pitched tones like the phone ringing or alarm clock can get lost. Those tones are high, also.
2. You avoid phone calls
It’s easy to make excuses for why you don’t answer the phone when it rings:
- I get a lot of spam calls – that’s most likely what it is
- It’s a brand new phone, and I’m just not used to it yet
Contemplate why you dread using your phone. It will be a good idea to get someone else to test the phone for you if the volume is at max and you still aren’t able to hear what the other person is saying. You probably have a hearing loss problem if you can’t hear the voice but your friend can.
3. Why does everybody mumble these days?
It seems like it’s no longer only the kids who are mumbling when they talk, it’s your neighbor, the news woman, your partner, and even your bartender. It’s difficult to imagine that everyone in your life suddenly has bad enunciation so this is a good indication of hearing decline. The way you hear words is changing. Mumbling or lost consonants like “S” or “T” is one of the first signs that your hearing is going through changes.
It may not be until someone points out that you’re saying “what?” a lot that you recognize you are developing hearing loss. Often, the first people to detect you are developing hearing loss are the people you see every day, like family and coworkers. If someone comments on it, you should pay attention.
5. What’s that ringing in my ears?
This sign is somewhat more obvious, but unless it becomes a disruption, people tend to disregard it. A common sign of hearing loss is a ringing in the ears, known as tinnitus.
Triggers are a substantial factor in tinnitus so it can be periodic, too. Perhaps, when you first get up in the morning is when you have the most noticeable ringing or buzzing. Or, it could also be a sign of high blood pressure, circulatory problems, or trauma.
If you’re experiencing these symptoms you should make an appointment for an exam because they could be a sign that you’re having a health problem.
6. It’s not as enjoyable attending the neighborhood get-together
It’s no fun when it sounds as if that many individuals are mumbling at the same time. Also, being in loud places makes understanding what individuals say that much more difficult. It becomes extremely difficult for you to hear anything when you’re around something as basic as the AC turning on or children splashing and playing around the pool. And, you always feel fatigued from trying to focus in on conversations.
7. You’re usually not this worn out
It’s laborious when you struggle to understand words. Your brain has to work overtime to process what it can hear, so you are more fatigued than normal. You may even notice differences in your other senses. How much energy is left for eyesight, for example, if your brain is using so much of its energy trying to hear and understand words? If your last eye test was normal, then the next thing to get checked is your ears.
8. Why can’t I hear this TV?
It’s easy to blame your old TV or the service provider when you have to keep cranking up the volume. It can be hard to follow the dialogue on your favorite shows when you’re dealing with hearing loss. The background music and sound effects are confusing dialogue, for example. There are other things such as the room AC or ceiling fan to deal with. Your hearing might be failing if you constantly turn the volume up.
Fortunately, all it takes to know for certain is a professional hearing exam and if it turns out your hearing is failing, hearing aids will help you get back to normal.
If you notice any of the above signs of hearing loss, give us a call today to schedule an appointment.