Recognizing when you require some medical advice is normally fairly easy. When you break a bone, for instance, you know you should go to the doctor (or the emergency room, depending on the situation). You may need a splint or a cast or supportive device, but the point is that you’re unlikely to try “toughing it out”. If you want your bones to mend properly, you need to get them treated as soon as possible.
It isn’t always that clear cut with regard to hearing aids, though. Hearing loss is typically a developing condition. This means knowing when to get treatment for hearing loss can be tricky.
That’s why it’s a good plan to keep an eye out for some particular indicators that you may be losing your ability to communicate. It’s likely time to call us for a consultation if you do detect any.
Hearing aids and hearing loss
Hearing aids are the primary form of treatment for hearing loss. But everybody who has some level of hearing loss won’t automatically need hearing aids. In situations where patients have very slight hearing loss, hearing aids won’t always be helpful. As a result, we may want you to wait before starting to use them. Likewise, you might be directed to wear hearing aids only in particular situations.
Essentially, the threshold for needing hearing aids is not always a hearing loss diagnosis.
But in many instances hearing aids will be the best solution. Because hearing loss can be a sneaky and gradual condition, lots of people don’t receive a diagnosis until there’s been significant damage. But if you come in for a hearing exam regularly, you might be able to catch your hearing loss early, and, because of this, you may not require hearing aids right away.
And if that’s the case, you’re probably thinking: how can I tell if I require hearing aids?
Signs you need a hearing aid
Hearing loss is one of those conditions that can cause immediate communication problems. But lots of times you don’t even recognize that hearing loss is the cause of those communication issues. So, when is it time for a hearing aid?
Watch out for these indicators:
- The volume on your devices is getting really loud: Hearing loss could be the culprit if you continuously need to crank the volume of your devices up. If you find people around you complaining about the loud volume of your devices, this is particularly true.
- When you’re in very loud locations, you have a hard time following conversations: This is probably one of the most prevalent symptoms of hearing loss. If you have difficulty hearing conversations in noisy places, that’s often a sure sign that you have hearing loss. That’s because your brain has difficulty filling in the missing information that gets lost with hearing impairment. A lot of conversations get muddled because of this.
- Phone conversations sound muffled: Even the highest quality phone speakers have a habit of flattening a voice. That can make it hard to understand, especially if you have hearing loss. Again, specific frequencies are cut out and the result is that it’s very difficult to hear those voices.
- When people talk, you can’t always make out what they said: Many people feel like the overall volume of life is fine so they never imagine that they might have hearing loss. But hearing loss is curious, it tends to impact certain frequencies before others. Which means that the great majority of sounds might seem ordinary but things in the high frequencies (such as certain vowels) will be distorted. This could cause you to have a difficult time making out what people are saying.
So how should you deal with it?
Clearly, you know exactly what you need to do when you break a bone! But what do you do when you start to detect the symptoms of hearing loss? What degree of hearing loss calls for hearing aids? Well, that’s difficult to answer, but when you begin noticing these signs, it’s a good plan to schedule 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 optimal 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 call you on the phone, your co-workers at your morning meeting, and your friends at the pub.
Give us a call to schedule your hearing exam, we can help you understand if you’re suffering from hearing loss.