Your hearing won’t be simply gone one day when you wake up. Hearing loss, particularly when it’s caused by aging, typically advances in degrees. Some signs appear earlier, though, and you don’t recognize there is a problem immediately.
These early developing symptoms advance very subtly. Identifying them sooner is crucial to slow down the progression of hearing loss or other health issues connected to aging. But if you are unaware of what the early symptoms are, you won’t be capable of recognizing if you have them. You might be developing hearing loss if you identify any of the following eight barely detectable signs.
1. You hear some people perfectly fine but not others
Maybe when you talk with your brother, you can understand him fine, but when your wife talks, some words just seem to get lost. It’s a typical sign that the nerves that send 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 might 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 are also high pitched tones.
2. You avoid phone conversations
It’s easy to make excuses for why you don’t pick up the phone when it rings:
- It’s a new phone, and I’m simply not used to it yet
- I get a lot of spam calls – that’s most likely what it is
Consider why you dislike using your phone. It will be a useful idea to get someone else to check the phone for you if the volume is all the way up and you still aren’t able to hear what the other person is saying. If they are able to hear the conversation and you can’t, your ears are likely the problem.
3. Why does everybody mumble these days?
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. If it seems as if everyone in your life is mumbling, you’re most likely dealing with hearing loss, because what is the likelihood of that? You’re not hearing words the same as you once did. One of the first signs that something is going on with your hearing is when it sounds like people are mumbling and consonants like “S” and “T” are getting lost.
It may not be until someone points out that you’re saying “what?” a lot that you recognize you are developing hearing loss. Frequently, the first people to notice you are developing hearing loss are the people you see every day, like family and coworkers. You should certainly pay attention if someone says something.
5. What’s that ringing in my ears?
This sign is a bit more obvious, but unless it becomes a distraction, people tend to disregard it. A prevalent sign of hearing loss is a ringing in the ears, known as tinnitus.
Triggers are a substantial factor in tinnitus so it can be periodic, too. Maybe, when you first get up in the morning is when you have the most pronounced ringing or buzzing. Or, it could also be a sign of high blood pressure, circulatory issues, or trauma.
If you’re noticing these symptoms you should make an appointment for an exam because they may be a sign that you’re having a health issue.
6. It’s not as fun attending the neighborhood block party
It’s no fun when it sounds like that many people are mumbling at the same time. It’s so much harder to make out what people are saying in loud settings. Something as basic as children playing and splashing around in the pool or the sound of the AC coming on you makes it extremely tough to hear anything. And, you always feel exhausted from trying to focus in on conversations.
7. You feel more fatigued than usual
It’s exhausting when you struggle to understand words. You feel more fatigued than usual because your brain has to work harder to try and process what it’s trying to hear. Your other senses may even begin to change. How much energy is left for eyesight, for example, if your brain is spending so much of its energy attempting to hear and understand words? If your last eye test was good, then the next thing to get tested is your ears.
8. Why can’t I hear this TV?
When you have to keep turning the volume on your TV up, it becomes all too easy to blame your service provider or that old TV. It can be hard to hear the dialogue on your favorite shows when you have hearing loss. The background music and sound effects are befuddling dialogue, for example. There are other things like the room AC or ceiling fan to deal with. If you keep cranking up the volume, then your hearing could be failing.
Fortunately, all it takes to know for sure is a professional hearing assessment and if you find out your hearing is failing, hearing aids will help you get some of your hearing back.
If you experience any of the above signs of hearing loss, contact us today to make an appointment.