It’s not like you simply wake up one day, and your hearing is gone. Hearing loss, especially when it’s associated with aging, usually advances in degrees. Some signs show up earlier, though, and you don’t detect there is a problem immediately.
The early symptoms of progressive hearing loss are discrete. Identifying them sooner is essential to delay the progression of hearing loss or other health problems related to aging. However, you can’t recognize the signs if you don’t know what they are. You might be developing hearing loss if you notice any of the following eight barely detectable signs.
1. You hear some people perfectly fine but not others
Maybe you can understand the cashier just fine, but when your wife joins the conversation, everything gets muddled. It’s a common sign that the nerves that transmit messages to the brain are damaged (called sensorineural hearing loss).
Her voice is higher in pitch, and that’s why it’s unclear. You may not be capable of hearing your daughter or grandchild very well for the same reason. Even technology like the microwave or an alarm can throw a loop into things. Those tones are high, also.
2. You avoid phone conversations
When the phone rings you tend to make excuses for not answering:
- It’s probably just spam
- I’m simply not used to this new phone yet
Contemplate why you dislike using your phone. If you have the volume all the way up and can’t understand what is being said, let a friend test the phone for you. You probably have a hearing loss issue if you can’t hear the voice but your friend can.
3. Why does everyone mumble these days?
It seems as if it’s no longer just the kids who are mumbling when they talk, it’s your neighbor, the news lady, your spouse, and even your bartender. It’s difficult to imagine that everyone in your life suddenly has poor enunciation so this is a strong indication of hearing decline. How you hear words is changing. Mumbling or lost consonants like “S” or “T” is one of the first indications that your hearing is changing.
4. You’re saying “what?” a lot
You may not even recognize that you can’t hear conversations anymore until someone points out that you’re saying “What?” during conversations a lot. Frequently the people you see every day like coworkers or family are the first to detect you are struggling to hear. If somebody comments on it, you should pay attention.
5. Why do I hear ringing noises in my ears?
This sign is a bit more obvious, but unless it becomes a distraction, people tend to disregard it. Tinnitus, the medical name for the ringing or buzzing in the ear, is a prevalent symptom of hearing loss.
Tinnitus can also be intermittent because triggers are a significant factor. For instance, maybe the ringing, buzzing, or roaring only occurs in the morning or when you are tired. Or a trauma, circulatory issues, or high blood pressure could be the cause.
It’s crucial that you don’t disregard these tinnitus symptoms because it’s a sign that something may be wrong, so you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible to get an exam.
6. Joining your friends at the neighborhood BBQ isn’t as fun
Again, there are those mumbling people, and that’s not fun. It’s so much harder to understand what people are saying in loud settings. It becomes impossible for you to hear anything when you’re in the presence of something as basic as the AC turning on or youngsters splashing and playing around the pool. And, you always feel fatigued from trying to keep up with conversations.
7. You’re normally not this worn out
Struggling to understand words is draining. Your brain has to work overtime to process what it does hear, so you are more fatigued than normal. You may even experience differences in your other senses. How much energy is left for eyesight, for instance, if your brain is using so much of its energy attempting to hear and understand words? If your last eye exam was good, then the next thing to get checked is your ears.
8. Why is this TV volume so low?
It’s easy to blame your old TV or the service provider when you need to keep cranking up the volume. It can be difficult to follow the dialogue on your favorite shows when you have hearing loss. The background music and sound effects are confusing dialogue, for example. How about the other things in the room like the AC or the ceiling fan? Your hearing might be failing if you constantly turn up the volume.
Luckily, if your hearing is failing, hearing aids can help, you just need to get a hearing test.
Give us a call today to make an appointment for a hearing test if you’ve noticed any of the above signs.