Have you ever wondered if you are experiencing hearing loss? Many who experience a problem with their hearing find that their hearing loss occurs so gradually it can sometimes be hard to notice that something is wrong until the problem becomes severe. If you think you might be dealing with hearing loss yourself, you may want to read through the following five signs of hearing loss in order to see how many of them fit you. You can also gain a better idea about the types of treatment options that are available.
1. You constantly turn up the volume
You’re struggling to hear every word on the television while practically everyone around you is complaining that the volume is far too high. This is something that people commonly notice as one of the first signs of hearing loss. There’s a good chance this has either happened to you or someone you know. In fact, approximately one-third of the United States population over the age of 65 has some degree of hearing deficit (https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/hearing-loss-common-problem-older-adults). Turning up the volume may be one of the first signs of the condition, but it definitely isn’t the only one you should watch for.
2. Background noise becomes a problem
You may need to get your hearing checked if you find that you have trouble hearing what others are saying when you are in a relatively noisy environment. Imagine sitting in a restaurant during peak hours while trying to have a conversation with other people at your table. In an environment like this, you would probably have to focus more in order to hear clearly anyway. However, when you have hearing loss, it may become almost impossible to hear the conversation properly.
3. You misunderstand important information
When you have hearing loss, you may not hear others well enough to ensure that you receive all the information you’re being given. This may not be something that you notice as readily when you’re dealing with names and other information you’re already familiar with. That said, it can cause you to get the names of individuals and places wrong, especially if it’s something you haven’t heard in the past.
4. People are shouting at you
Sometimes the signs of hearing loss come from other people. If those around you are routinely telling you that they have to shout at you in order for you to hear them, it may be time to schedule a hearing exam. It’s perfectly normal to ask someone to talk louder when you’re dealing with background noise or something similar. However, it’s not normal to be incapable of hearing others unless they are screaming at you at the top of their voice.
5. You have to be looking directly at someone to hear them
Last but certainly not least, you may notice that you no longer have the ability to hear others unless they are looking right at you when they speak. If you can’t hear someone who is either slightly behind or ahead of you, it may be a sign that your hearing isn’t quite what it used to be. Therefore, it’s a good idea to have your hearing checked if it always sounds like people are mumbling.
What about treatment options?
Unfortunately, hearing loss isn’t something that can be cured but that doesn’t mean that effective treatment options aren’t available. By far, the most widely used treatment is the hearing aid. These days, most hearing aids are so small that they’re almost imperceptible. In some more extreme cases, it may be necessary to use an implant that interfaces with both the ear and the brain. Rarer still is the need to have surgery in order to restore some portion of hearing which has been lost.
No one wants to be forced to handle hearing loss. However, the condition is far more common than most people realize. There is absolutely no reason for you to try to handle things on your own. Thanks to modern-day medicine, it’s now possible to keep up with the conversation next time you get together with friends. Who knows, you might even be the center of the conversation yourself.