Woman with short curly hair reading about hearing tests on her phone contemplating scheduling and exam

When is it time to get a hearing exam? You need a hearing test if you have any of these four warning signs.

I guess my TV is frequently turned up to the point where my kids recently complained. You know what my response was? I said, “What”? It was humorous. Because it was a joke. But it also wasn’t. I have needed to turn the TV up increasingly louder as of late. And that got me thinking that maybe it’s time for a hearing assessment.

There aren’t all that many reasons not to make an appointment for a hearing test. They’re not invasive, there’s no radiation, you don’t need to worry about discomfort. It’s really just that you haven’t put aside time to do it.

Considering how much untreated hearing loss can impact your health, you really should be more diligent about making sure your hearing loss hasn’t gotten worse.

Hearing evaluations are important for many reasons. It’s usually challenging for you to identify the earliest indications of hearing loss without one, and even mild hearing impairment can impact your health.

So how will you know if you should schedule an appointment? Here are some indications that it’s time.

You should get your hearing tested if you observe these signs

If you’ve recently encountered any of the signs of hearing loss, it’s definitely a smart plan to get a professional hearing exam. Clearly, it’s a powerful indication of hearing loss if you’re having a hard time hearing.

But some of the other signs of hearing loss are more subtle:

  • It’s hard to hear in noisy locations: Have you ever had a hard time keeping up with conversations because of background noise in a busy room? If this sounds familiar you could be developing hearing loss. As your hearing goes from healthy to impaired, one of the first warning signs is the loss of the ability to identify specific sounds.
  • It sounds like everyone’s always mumbling: Sometimes, it’s not loss of volume you need to worry about, it’s a loss of definition. Trouble making out conversations is one of the first signs that something is going wrong with your hearing. It might be time for a hearing test if you notice this happening more and more frequently.
  • Persistent ringing in your ears: A common sign of damaged hearing is a ringing in the ears, also known as tinnitus. If you’re experiencing some ringing that won’t stop, it may or may not be a symptom of hearing loss. But if the ringing won’t go away, you should absolutely call us for a hearing evaluation.
  • You always miss alerts for text messages: Mobile devices are manufactured to be loud enough for you to hear. So if you keep noticing text messages or calls that you missed, it’s probably because you couldn’t hear them. And maybe, when you think about it, you’re missing out on more common sounds.

Here are several other situations that indicate you should schedule a hearing exam:

  • You regularly use certain medications that are known to have an effect on your hearing.
  • It’s difficult to pinpoint the origin of sounds
  • Your ears aren’t removing earwax completely
  • Your ear is still plugged after an infection
  • You’re experiencing episodes of vertigo

This checklist is in no way exhaustive. For instance, if your TV’s volume is maxed and you still can’t hear it. But any one of these symptoms is worth following up on.

Regular checkups

But what if, to your knowledge, you haven’t experienced any of these possible symptoms of hearing impairment? Is there a guideline for how often you should go get your hearing checked? There’s a guideline for everything else, right, so there’s got to be a guideline for this. Well, yes, there are recommendations.

  • Sometime after you turn 21, you should have a hearing test. That way, you’ll have a standard of your mature hearing.
  • If your hearing is healthy, undergo hearing screenings or tests every three years or so. That can be a huge chunk of time to pay attention to, so make sure they’re marked in your medical records somewhere.
  • If you notice signs of hearing loss, you will want to have it tested right away, and then annually after that.

It will be easier to identify any hearing loss before any warning signs become obvious with routine examinations. The earlier you find treatment, the better you’ll be able to protect your hearing into the future. Which means, you should probably turn down your TV and schedule a hearing test.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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