Knowing when you need some medical advice is typically fairly easy. When you break a bone, for instance, you know you should go to the doctor (or the emergency room, depending on the scenario). You might need a splint or a cast or supportive device, but the thing is that you’re unlikely to try “toughing it out”. If you want your bones to heal correctly, you need to get them taken care of as soon as you can.
It’s not always that clear cut with regard to hearing aids, however. Hearing loss is typically a developing condition. This means it’s not always easy to know when you might need to start wearing hearing aids or to put off seeking treatment you know could be helpful.
So watching out for signs that your hearing may be going is a good idea. It’s likely time to call us for a consultation if you do notice any.
Hearing aids and hearing loss
Hearing aids are the main form of treatment for hearing loss. But that doesn’t mean everyone who has hearing loss will immediately need a pair of hearing aids. Hearing aids won’t always be practical in cases of mild hearing loss. We may want you to hold off on using hearing aids because of this. It’s also feasible that we could instruct you to only wear your hearing aids when you’re in certain situations.
In other words, the threshold for needing hearing aids isn’t always a diagnosis of hearing loss.
However, hearing aids will be the ideal solution in many circumstances. Many individuals won’t have their hearing loss diagnosed until it becomes more severe because hearing loss progresses gradually and often goes unnoticed for a while. But if you come in for a hearing exam regularly, you might be able to catch your hearing loss early, and, as a result, you might not need hearing aids immediately.
So how will you know if you have hearing loss?
Indications you need a hearing aid
Hearing loss is one of those conditions that can produce instant communication obstacles. The curious thing, though, is that you don’t always comprehend that those communication issues are the result of hearing loss. So, when is it time for a hearing aid?
Watch out for these indicators:
- You listen to the radio or TV at high levels: If you’re constantly turning up the volume on your television or radio or smartphone, it may be due to hearing loss. This is especially true if you keep turning that volume knob higher (and even more especially true if the people around you complain about how loud your media is).
- You have a hard time hearing conversations in noisy places: When people ask, “What are the signs of hearing loss?”, this one is almost always mentioned. One of the surest signs of hearing loss is that you have trouble following conversations in noisy locations, like bars or restaurants. This occurs because your ears aren’t getting as much information as they used to, and your brain isn’t really capable of filling in the gaps as easily. Because of this, there’s a lot of muffled conversations.
- When people speak, you can’t always make out what they said: Many people feel like the total volume of life is fine so they never consider that they might have hearing loss. But the thing about hearing loss is that particular frequencies of sound tend to go before others. Because of this, things like vowel sounds in the higher pitches can sound distorted. As a result, you may have a tough time making out what people are saying to you.
- Phone conversations sound muddled: Even the highest quality phone speakers tend to flatten a voice. That can make it hard to understand, especially if you have hearing loss. Again, particular frequencies are cut out and the outcome is that it’s really difficult to understand those voices.
So how should you deal with it?
When you break your leg, it’s clear cut what to do: you go to the doctor! But what do you do when you start to notice the symptoms of hearing loss? What level of hearing loss calls for hearing aids? Well, that’s difficult to answer, but when you begin detecting these signs, it’s a good idea to make an appointment with us. We will be able to inform you about how severe your hearing loss is.
A hearing evaluation will also help you get the most effective hearing aids for your needs if you do indeed need hearing aids. This means you’ll be able to get back to communicating with your friends and loved ones, you’ll hear your grandkids when they give you a call, your co-workers at your morning meeting, and your friends at the pub.
Call us for a hearing exam so we can help you improve your quality of life.