Your hearing won’t be simply gone one day when you wake up. For most people, hearing loss happens in degrees, especially when it is related to the aging process. You might not detect it’s happening immediately but some indicators do show up earlier.
These early developing symptoms progress very discreetly. Identifying them sooner is crucial to delay the development of hearing loss or other health issues related to aging. However, you can’t recognize the signs if you have no clue what they are. You might be developing hearing loss if you identify any of the following eight barely detectable signs.
1. Some voices you can’t hear very well, others you can
Maybe when you speak with your brother, you can understand him fine, but when your wife talks, some words just seem to get lost. It’s a common sign that the nerves that transmit messages to the brain are damaged (known as sensorineural hearing loss).
Her voice is a higher pitch, and that’s why it isn’t as clear. You may not be capable of hearing your daughter or grandchild very well for the same reason. Even higher pitched tones such as the phone ringing or alarm clock can get lost. Those are also high pitched tones.
2. You don’t like to talk on the phone
When the phone rings you tend to make excuses for not answering:
- I get a lot of spam calls – that’s probably what it is
- It’s a brand new phone, and I’m just not used to it yet
Contemplate why you dread talking on your phone. If you have the volume all the way up and can’t hear what is being said, let someone else test the phone for you. You most likely have a hearing loss issue if you can’t hear the voice but your friend can.
3. Why is everyone mumbling?
It seems like it’s no longer only the kids who are mumbling when they talk, it’s your neighbor, the news woman, your spouse, and even your bartender. It’s hard to imagine that everyone in your life suddenly has poor enunciation so this is a good indication of hearing decline. You’re not hearing words the same as you used to. Mumbling or lost consonants like “S” or “T” is one of the first signs that your hearing is changing.
It might not be until somebody points out that you’re saying “what?” a lot that you realize you are developing hearing loss. Often, the first people to notice you are developing hearing loss are the people you see on a daily basis, like family and coworkers. If somebody comments on it, you should pay attention.
5. What’s that ringing in my ears?
This sign is somewhat more obvious, but unless it becomes a distraction, people tend to ignore it. Tinnitus, the medical name for the ringing or buzzing in the ear, is a common symptom of hearing loss.
Triggers are an important factor in tinnitus so it can be intermittent, too. For instance, perhaps the ringing, buzzing, or roaring only occurs in the morning or when you are tired. Or, it could also be a symptom of high blood pressure, circulatory problems, or trauma.
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. It isn’t as fun going to the neighborhood block party
Once again, there are those people mumbling, and that’s not fun. Also, being in noisy settings makes understanding what individuals say that much more difficult. Something as simple as youngsters playing and splashing around in the pool or the sound of the AC kicking on you makes it impossible to hear anything. And, you always feel exhausted from trying to focus in on conversations.
7. You feel more worn out than normal
Battling to understand words is exhausting. Your brain needs to work overtime to process what it can hear, so you are more tired than normal. You might even experience differences in your other senses. How much energy is left for eyesight, for example, if your brain is spending so much of its energy trying to hear and understand words? If your eyes have tested fine, now it’s time to have your ears assessed.
8. Why can’t I hear this TV?
It is easy to blame your old TV or the service provider when you need to keep turning up the volume. It can be hard to follow the dialogue on your favorite shows when you’re dealing with hearing loss. Dialogue is being muddled by background music and sound effects. There are other things such as the room AC or ceiling fan to cope with. Your hearing could be failing if you constantly turn the volume up.
The good news is, all it takes to know for certain is a professional hearing test and if it turns out your hearing is failing, hearing aids will help you get back to normal.
If you experience any of the above signs of hearing loss, give us a call today to schedule an appointment.