You don’t suddenly lose your hearing one day when you wake up. For most people, hearing loss gradually over time, 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. You might not detect the problem immediately even though some signs show up earlier.
Early hearing loss has progressive 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. Think about these eight barely noticeable clues that you could have hearing loss.
1. Ears Ringing
Okay, this isn’t exactly a subtle sign, but people tend to ignore it unless it’s distracting. The medical name for this ringing is tinnitus, a common symptom of hearing loss.
The ringing can be intermittent and only act up when triggered. Perhaps the ringing only takes place when your tired or in the morning for instance.
Tinnitus is an indicator that something else is going on with your body so it should never be neglected. Besides hearing loss, tinnitus can be caused by high blood pressure, trauma, or a circulatory problem. If you want to know for sure, you will need to consult your doctor.
2. Talking on The Phone is Stressful
It’s easy to make excuses for phone issues like:
- My phone is out dated.
- My phone is damaged from being dropped.
- I’m not used to my phone’s newer technology yet.
Think about why you dislike talking on our phone. If you turn the volume all the way up and can’t comprehend what is being said, let a friend 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 Everybody Mumbles
It used to be only the kids, but recently, the news anchor, your neighbor, and your spouse all have taken to muttering when they talk to you. Could it really be true that suddenly everyone in your life has poor enunciation.
The most likely answer is the way you hear words is changing. One of the first indications that your hearing is changing is when talking sounds like mumbling and consonants such as “S” and “T” drop off.
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 close to you like coworkers or family members. Pay attention if someone comments on it.
5. Some People You Hear Fine But Others Not so Much
Perhaps you can hear the neighbor fine, but when his wife starts talking, everything gets muddled up. You can have sensorineural hearing loss, or injury to the nerves that send electrical signals to the brain, and this is a normal symptom.
Her voice isn’t as clear because it’s a higher pitch. Your daughter or grandchild might present the same problem. Even technology like the microwave or an alarm can throw a loop into things. Those tones are high pitched, as well.
6. Going Out Used to be Much More Fun
Worse yet are the people who actually mumble. Also, it’s much more difficult to understand what people are saying when you are in a noisy place. It becomes impossible to hear anything when you are at dinner and people start chatting around you or the AC comes on.
7. You Are More Tired Than Normal
It’s can be exhausting struggling to understand what people are saying. Your brain has to work overtime to process what it does hear, so you are more tired than normal. Your other senses might also experience changes. If your brain is utilizing 110 percent of its time and energy to understand words, what’s left for your eyesight or balance? If your last eye examination was normal, then the next thing to get checked is your hearing.
8. That Darn TV
Instead of accusing the service provider when you need to keep turning the TV up, think about getting a hearing exam. When you have loss of hearing it can be difficult to hear dialog. There is the background music confusing things, for instance. And don’t forget about the AC, ceiling fan or other things in the room. Your hearing is probably starting to fail if you have to keep turning up the volume.
The good news is all you need to do to know for sure is a professional hearing exam. Hearing aids should get things back to normal if it turns out that you have a hearing problem.