Recognizing when you require some medical advice is typically fairly easy. When you break your leg, for instance, you know you should go to the doctor (or the emergency room, depending on the scenario). You might need a splint or a cast or supportive device, but the thing is that you’re not likely to try “toughing it out”. At least, not for very long (especially if you want your bones to repair themselves properly).
But with regard to hearing aids, it isn’t always so easy to know when it’s time to get some help. Hearing loss usually progresses very gradually over time. This means it isn’t always easy to know when you may need to start wearing hearing aids or to put off finding treatment you know could be beneficial.
So keeping an eye out for signs that your hearing may be going is a good idea. It’s likely time to call us for a consultation if you do notice any.
Hearing aids and hearing loss
Hearing loss is primarily managed with hearing aids. But everyone who has some level of hearing loss won’t automatically need hearing aids. Hearing aids won’t always be helpful in cases of minor hearing loss. We may want you to hold off on using hearing aids because of this. In addition, you might be instructed to wear hearing aids only in specific situations.
In other words, the threshold for needing hearing aids is not always a diagnosis of hearing loss.
But in many situations hearing aids will be the best solution. Because hearing loss can be a sneaky and slow condition, lots of individuals don’t get a diagnosis until there’s been considerable damage. Getting your hearing examined regularly is the key to catching hearing loss early and possibly mitigating the need for hearing aids.
So how will you know if you have hearing loss?
Signs you need a hearing aid
Instant communication challenges can be the consequence of hearing loss. But lots of times you don’t even realize that hearing loss is the cause of those communication problems. So, when is it time for a hearing aid?
Here are some of the common signs you should look out for:
- Phone conversations sound muddled: Voices typically sound a little flat on even high-quality phone speakers. That can make it hard to understand, particularly if you have hearing loss. Once again, specific frequencies are missing and the outcome is that it’s really hard to understand those voices.
- You have difficulty making out what people are saying: Many individuals don’t think they have hearing loss or need hearing aids because the overall volume they hear seems fine. But the thing about hearing loss is that specific frequencies of sound usually go before others. Which means that the great majority of sounds might seem ordinary but things in the high frequencies (like certain vowels) will be distorted. This could cause you to have a tough time making out what people are saying.
- You listen to the radio or TV at high levels: Hearing loss could be the cause if you continuously need to turn the volume of your devices up. This is particularly true if you keep moving that volume knob higher (and even more especially true if the people around you complain about how loud your media is).
- When you’re in very loud locations, you have a tough time following conversations: This is probably one of the most common symptoms of hearing loss. One of the surest signs of hearing loss is that you have trouble following conversations in loud settings, like bars or restaurants. That’s because your brain has a hard time filling in the missing information that gets lost with hearing impairment. Lots of conversations get muddled as a result.
So what should you do?
Obviously, you know precisely what you have to do when you break a bone! But what about when you notice these signs that you may need a hearing aid? What degree of hearing loss calls for hearing aids? That’s not a very easy answer but you should make an appointment with us for a hearing assessment if you begin to detect any hearing loss symptoms. We’ll be able to assess the health of your hearing and ascertain just how serious your hearing loss may or may not be.
And if you do end up needing hearing aids, a hearing exam will help identify the best device for your hearing needs. This means you’ll be able to get back to spending quality time with your friends and loved ones, you’ll hear your grandkids when they give you a call, your co-workers at your morning meeting, and your friends at the pub.
Call us for a hearing test so we can help you improve your quality of life.