It’s not like you simply wake up one day, and your hearing is gone. Hearing loss happens gradually over time for most people, especially when it comes to aging. Age-related hearing loss affects about one in three people in this country. Many of them are over the age of 75 before they recognize a change. Some symptoms show up earlier, though, and you may not realize there is an issue immediately.
Early hearing loss has gradual and subtle signs. Recognizing them as soon as possible is essential to slow down the progression of hearing loss or other health problems related to hearing loss. However, if you’re not sure what the signs are, you can’t recognize them. You might have hearing loss if you have any of these eight barely noticeable indicators.
1. Ringing in The Ears
This is one that people have a tendency to neglect if it doesn’t get too disruptive and it’s really not very subtle. Tinnitus, the medical name for the ringing, is a common indication of hearing loss.
The ringing can be intermittent and only act up when triggered. Perhaps the ringing only takes place when your tired or when you first get up for instance.
It’s crucial that you don’t ignore tinnitus because it is an indication that something is going on with your body. Besides hearing loss, tinnitus can be caused by high blood pressure, trauma, or a circulatory problem. You won’t know for certain until you consult your doctor, though.
2. Talking on The Phone is Stressful
It’s not hard to make excuses for phone issues like:
- My phone is old.
- I dropped my phone in water or on the ground.
- It’s a new phone, and I’m just not used to it yet.
If you dislike talking on the phone consider the reasons why. If you turn the volume all the way up and can’t understand what is being said, let someone else test the phone for you. If you can’t hear the conversation but they can then you have a hearing problem.
3. These Days it Seems Like Everyone Mumbles
Lately, it’s not only your kids, but also your neighbor, the news anchor, and even your spouse that have begun to mumble to you. Could it really be possible that all of a sudden everyone in your life has poor enunciation.
It’s more likely that you might not be hearing words in the same way. One of the first signs that your hearing is changing is when talking sounds like mumbling and consonants like “S” and “T” drop off.
4. What Did You Say?
You might not even recognize that you can’t hear conversations any more until someone points out that you say “What? a lot. Usually, the first to notice you have hearing loss are people you see every day like coworkers or family members. Pay attention if someone comments on it.
5. Some People You Hear Fine But Others Not so Much
Maybe when you are having a chat with your neighbor everything sounds okay but when his wife starts to talk you can’t understand a word. It’s a common symptom of sensorineural hearing loss or damage to the nerves that send electrical messages to the brain.
Her voice isn’t as clear because it’s higher pitched. Your daughter or grandchild might present the same problem. Even when you are in normal situations, something as basic as trying to hear the sound of an alarm clock ar a microwave can make things complicated. Those tones are also high pitched.
6. Going Out Isn’t as Much Fun as it Once Was
Again, there are those mumbling people, and that’s not fun. Also, being in noisy places makes comprehending what people say a big challenge. It becomes impossible to hear anything when you are at dinner and people start conversing around you or the AC comes on.
7. You Feel More Tired Than Usual
It’s can be exhausting struggling to comprehend what people are saying. Your brain has to work overtime to process what it does hear, so you are more exhausted than usual. Your other senses may also undergo changes. If your brain is using 110 percent of its time and energy to understand words, what’s left for your eyesight or balance? If your last eye test was okay, then the next thing to get checked is your hearing.
8. That Dang TV
Instead of accusing the service provider when you have to keep cranking the TV up, consider getting a hearing test. It can be difficult to hear people talking on TV shows when you have hearing loss. There is the background music confusing things, for example. And don’t even mention the AC, ceiling fan or other things in the room. Your hearing is most likely starting to falter if you need to keep turning up the volume.
A professional hearing exam will tell you for sure and that’s the good news. Hearing aids should get things back to normal if it turns out that your hearing has declined.