Posted on Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Do I Have Hearing Loss?

"Do I have hearing loss?" this beautifully maturing woman wonders.

Hearing loss can happen to anyone at any time. It can be genetic or instant and everyone is at risk for developing some form of hearing loss. The risk increases with age, but isn’t exclusive to any particular age. There are some simple ways to recognize if you have hearing loss.

Below are some of the most common ways you can recognize if you have hearing loss.

  • Asking people to repeat themselves-- People often dismiss this sign as room acoustics, background noise, or others mumbling.
  • Missing conversation cues at the office or at restaurants-- This symptom of hearing loss, if left untreated, can cause withdraw and can lead to depression and isolation.
  • A family member's complaints-- It's important not to dismiss family members when they tell you that you ask to have things repeated too often or they are tired of related conversations to you. It's also important for family members to not allow those with hearing loss to rely too heavily on them for assistance. This keeps people with hearing loss from seeking help.
  • A blocked or fuzzy feeling in the ears-- This fullness is an easier way to determine hearing loss and can happen all at once, as in sudden sensorineural hearing loss, but can also be overlooked due to a cold, allergies, or some other condition that makes the fuzzy feeling seem routine.
  • Inability to hear the voices of some women and children clearly--If you consistently feel that women or children are mumbling around you, pay attention. This is a warning sign and might mean you have hearing loss.
  • Difficulty hearing in crowds-- This indicates a possible high-frequency hearing loss. With this type of loss, you can hear well in one-on-one situations and even in small groups. But distracting background noise can be louder than the voices you’re trying to hear, making it difficult to hear in larger settings.
  • Raising the television volume-- Does your spouse or loved one complain that you listen to the television at too high levels? If so, this could be a sign that you have hearing loss. People often dismiss this sign as a product of room acoustics, differences in show audio, or a failing of their television rather than recognizing that they may have hearing loss.
  • I hear well, but don't always understand what has been said-- Letters all have unique frequencies when spoken. Most consonant sounds are high in pitch. When certain frequencies are lost due to hearing loss, speech can become difficult to understand
  • Still not sure you have hearing loss? Try taking this Hearing Loss Quiz or better yet make an appointment with your hearing health provider. If you need help finding a hearing health provider click HERE to be connected with the largest network of trusted hearing health professionals in the nation!

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