Do you have trouble hearing? The assumption that only the elderly need hearing aids prevents many from rectifying hearing problems before they become worse. Hearing loss is a serious condition that can either happen suddenly or deteriorate gradually over time. However, this problem should not control your life, thanks to the technology of hearing aids.
Just like many progressive illnesses, the onset of hearing loss occurs slowly and subtly. Because it is difficult to detect hearing loss before it becomes a full-blown problem, here are four signs that will help you know when it's time to book the appointment with a specialist.
1. People Complain About Your Volume Levels
While you might think that the volume level is perfectly normal, others may inform you that your TV volume or ringtone is too high. Your normal speaking voice could also be too loud for other people, in person or over the phone. While some people are sensitive to hearing, when many people are constantly telling you to lower your volume, it might be time to visit an audiologist and determine if you need hearing aids.
2. You Have Trouble Hearing Over the Phone
Both landline and mobile phones are fitted with volume control settings. If you find that you need to amp the level to the maximum in order to have a telephone conversation, and even then, you struggle to hear them, you might be suffering from gradual hearing loss. Visit an audiologist and have your hearing inspected.
3. You Have Trouble Following a Conversation
You may find yourself getting lost in conversation when multiple people are speaking. You may constantly have to ask people to enunciate slowly and with higher clarity levels. Other times, you must lean in to hear what someone is saying. An audiologist will inspect your hearing and advise you on the way forward, one of which could be to have a hearing aid to help you hear normally.
4. You Hear Clearly Only From One Ear
If you must switch your telephone or mobile phone to one ear specifically because the other one does not hear clearly, you could be suffering from hearing loss in one of your ears. Another symptom may be having to lean or turn your head all together to allow the 'stronger' ear to pick up on what is being said. Urgently see an audiologist and have the condition diagnosed and treated, or have the ear fitted with a hearing aid.
Although age is the condition most commonly associated with hearing loss, other things such as workplace noise, medication, illnesses like tinnitus and ear trauma can result in hearing loss and the need for a hearing aid. If you have any of the above symptoms or suspect your ears could be suffering from hearing loss, however gradually, don't hesitate to visit an audiologist to have your ear fitted for a hearing aid and other forms of treatment.