What are The Signs that I Need to Undergo a Hearing Assessment?
Many people avoid getting their hearing checked for far too long. The reasons for this can be complex; our lives are busy and it can be difficult to find the time, fear and stigma of being diagnosed with hearing loss, and an inability to recognise the signs of hearing loss. Hearing loss slowly progresses and our brain adapts to the changes that occur at the ear, so you may never notice a difference between what you hear now and what you heard some years ago. Furthermore, there is not much awareness of the true signs of hearing loss. Many people believe it is simply a matter of turning down the volume, but this is not the case.
Do you constantly ask people to repeat themselves? Does it seem like people are mumbling? Are people around you complaining about your always turning the volume too high? Do you often miss out what people are saying? Well, you might be needing to get your hearing assessed as soon as possible. Why? Because you might be experiencing hearing loss.
While the environment and different voices can play a part in how well you hear, if you commonly experience any of the issues above, it is worth getting your hearing assessed. It may not mean you have a hearing loss, but the only way to know for sure is to see an audiologist.
Audiologists propose that our hearing be monitored and checked from time to time. Although we are not expecting to have something wrong with our hearing, we are still advised to be cautious. Most people will not recognise that a change in hearing has occurred, because the change occurs so slowly. It is also important to seek help early because the sooner a hearing loss is identified and managed, the more successful treatment is.
Whether or not there are any noticeable signs of hearing loss, let us all together help spread awareness on this matter.
Here are some signs that you or your loved ones might need to have his or her hearing checked.
Also read: Adult Hearing Assessments
When Do I Know I Need to Undergo A Hearing Assessment?
1. When You Always Ask People to Repeat What They Said
It is normal to ask people to repeat what they said at times. Especially when they are speaking at a distance, when faced away from you, or it’s noisy. However, if this is a frequent occurrence for you, then it may be a sign of hearing loss. This is particularly true if friends and family are noticing that they need to repeat what they said. Sometimes, this can cause frustration and conflict. Usually, the problem is not that you cannot hear the person at all, but that they seem unclear as if they are mumbling. This occurs because hearing loss is not a matter of turning the volume down, but usually affects the clarity of speech.
2. When it is Difficult for You to Hear in Noisy Places
Background noises might be of great hindrance to you when it comes to speech comprehension. What’s making it hard for you might be a loss of hearing. Chatters and other forms of noise might interrupt the sound you are trying to understand or hear. One of the most common early signs of hearing loss is difficulty hearing in background noise such as cafes, restaurants and groups. It is normal to have more difficulty in background noise than in quiet. However, if you avoid noisy places, stop conversing in noisy places or seem to have more trouble than those around you, it is a sign you should get your hearing checked.
3. When You are Setting the Volume Way too High but You Don’t Notice it
Do you wonder why others are complaining about how loud the television is? Do you feel that the dialogue on the television is unclear and they’re mumbling? This is often a sign that the clarity of your hearing has been affected by a hearing loss.
4. When there’s Ringing Inside Your Ears (Tinnitus)
tinnitus (ringing, buzzing, whirring or other sounds in the ears) is one major warning that your hearing needs to be checked. While tinnitus does not cause a hearing loss, it is often an early sign of hearing loss.
Related article: What causes tinnitus?
5. When Phone Calls are A Struggle
Do you often find it difficult to communicate through the phone? Is it because you cannot hear the spoken words clearly? Well instead of trying to avoid such a scenario, you should visit an audiologist instead. Hearing clearly on the phone can be difficult because we cannot rely on visual cues (lip-reading, body language) to help us understand. If there is a hearing loss present, these visual cues can be crucial for understanding whether or not we realise we’re using them.
To undergo hearing assessment means to undergo a series of hearing tests that will help you know the current condition of your auditory system. An audiologist can help determine if there are any medical issues at play, whether a hearing loss is present, and whether any action needs to be taken. Sometimes, the outcome of the hearing test is just to monitor the hearing until action needs to be taken.
Want to keep track of your current hearing condition?
The key is to schedule an appointment with an audiologist. This way, your hearing will be evaluated by an expert. And you have an assurance that your hearing healthcare is in good hands.