Recognizing when you need some medical advice is typically pretty easy. You know you need to go see a doctor immediately if you break your leg, for example. With situations like this, simply “toughing it out” isn’t an option. At least, not for very long (especially if you want your bones to repair themselves correctly).
But with regard to hearing aids, it’s not always so simple to identify when it’s time to get some assistance. Hearing loss normally advances very gradually over time. This means recognizing when to get treatment for hearing loss can be tricky.
So keeping an eye out for indications that your hearing is going is a good idea. If you observe any, it may be time to talk to us about your first set of hearing aids.
Hearing aids and hearing loss
Hearing aids are the primary form of treatment for hearing loss. But that doesn’t mean everyone who has hearing loss will immediately need a pair of hearing aids. In situations where patients have very slight hearing loss, hearing aids won’t always be useful. We might want you to hold off on using hearing aids as a result. It’s also feasible that we could instruct you to only wear your hearing aids when you’re in particular situations.
In other words, the threshold for requiring hearing aids isn’t always a hearing loss diagnosis.
However, hearing aids will be the ideal answer in many cases. Because hearing loss can be a sneaky and slow condition, many people don’t get a diagnosis until there’s been significant damage. Getting your hearing examined regularly is the key to catching hearing loss early and possibly mitigating the need for hearing aids.
And if that’s the situation, you’re most likely thinking: how can I tell if I need hearing aids?
You need hearing aids if you recognize these signs
Instant communication problems can be the result of hearing loss. But lots of times you don’t even realize that hearing loss is the reason for those communication issues. So, at what stage will a hearing aid help?
Look out for these indicators:
- When people talk, you can’t always make out what they said: Many people don’t think they have hearing loss or need hearing aids because the total volume they hear seems fine. But the thing about hearing loss is that certain frequencies of sound usually go before others. Which means that the vast majority of sounds might seem ordinary but things in the high frequencies (such as certain vowels) will be distorted. As a result, you might have a difficult time understanding what people are saying to you.
- Phone conversations sound muffled: Voices usually sound a bit flat on even high-quality phone speakers. If you have hearing loss, this can make it even more challenging to understand conversations. Again, certain frequencies are missing and the result is that it’s extremely hard to hear those voices.
- The volume on your devices is getting really loud: If you’re continuously turning up the volume on your television or radio or smartphone, it might be the result of hearing loss. This is especially true if you keep moving that volume knob higher (and even more especially relevant if the people around you complain about how loud your media is).
- You have a difficult time hearing conversations in loud places: This is probably one of the most prevailing symptoms of hearing loss. One of the surest signs of hearing loss is that you have trouble following conversations in loud locations, like bars or restaurants. This happens because your ears are not receiving as much information as they used to, and your brain isn’t really able to fill in the gaps as easily. Because of this, there’s a lot of muddled conversations.
So what should you do?
When you break a bone, it’s obvious what to do: you go see the doctor! But what about when you notice these signs that you might need a hearing aid? How bad does hearing loss have to be to require a hearing aid? 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’ll be able to assess the health of your hearing and ascertain just how serious your hearing loss may or may not be.
And if you do end up needing hearing aids, a hearing exam will help identify the best device for your hearing needs. Then you will be able to get back to enjoying good conversations with your friends and family members and doing the things you love.
Contact us to schedule your hearing test, we can help you recognize if you’re suffering from hearing loss.