When should you have your hearing tested? Here are four clues that you need to get your hearing assessed.
I guess my TV is frequently turned up to the point where my kids recently complained. And guess what my reply was. I said, “What”? It was funny. Because it was a joke. But it also wasn’t. The TV has been getting progressively louder. And I began to ask myself: should I get a hearing test?
It really doesn’t make much sense to neglect getting a hearing assessment. They’re not invasive, there’s no radiation, you don’t need to worry about discomfort. You’ve most likely just been putting it off.
Considering how much untreated hearing loss can affect your health, you really should be more diligent about making sure your hearing impairment hasn’t worsened.
Hearing assessments are essential for many reasons. It’s often hard for you to identify the earliest signs of hearing loss without one, and even mild hearing loss can impact your health.
So how will you know if you should schedule an appointment? Here are several ways to know if you need to consult with us.
Signs you should get a hearing test
It’s time to get a professional hearing test if you’ve been noticing symptoms of hearing loss recently. Obviously, if things are difficult to hear, that’s a pretty solid indication of hearing loss.
But that’s not the only indicator, and there are some signs of hearing impairment that are much less obvious:
- Chronic ringing in your ears: A common sign of injured hearing is a ringing in the ears, also known as tinnitus. Ringing in the ear may or may not indicate hearing loss. But if the ringing won’t clear itself up, you should absolutely call us for a hearing evaluation.
- You have a difficult time hearing when you’re in a noisy setting: Have you ever been to a crowded or loud space and had difficulty hearing the conversation because of all the background noise? That could actually be an indication of hearing loss. Being able to identify sounds is one indication of a healthy ear; this ability tends to decline as hearing loss worsens.
- It seems as if people are mumbling when they speak: Sometimes, it’s clarity not volume you have to worry about. One of the earlier symptoms of hearing loss is trouble making out conversations. If you experience this happening more and more, you might want to schedule a hearing test.
- You don’t always hear alerts for text messages: Your cellphone (or mobile device, as they’re called these days) is made to be loud. So if you keep finding text messages or calls that you missed, it’s most likely because you didn’t hear them. And perhaps, when you think about it, you’re failing to hear more common sounds.
This list isn’t exhaustive, here are a few more:
- You can’t easily identify where particular sounds are coming from
- You have a buildup of ear wax you’re body can’t clear by itself
- You regularly use certain medications that are recognized to have an effect on your hearing.
- Your ear is still plugged after an ear infection
- You’re experiencing episodes of vertigo
This list is certainly not exhaustive. There are other instances of red flags (if, for example, the volume on your TV is maxed out and you still want it to go just a little bit louder). But any one of these signs is worth following up on.
But how should you deal with it when you’re not sure if you have any signs of hearing loss. Is there a guideline for how frequently you should schedule a hearing exam? With all of the other guidelines for everything else, this one seems like a no-brainer. Well, yes, there are suggestions.
- Get a primary assessment done sometime after you’re 21. That way, you’ll have a standard of your mature hearing.
- If your hearing is healthy, undergo hearing screenings or tests every three years or so. But be sure you mark these appointments in your calendar or medical records because it’s easy to forget over these large periods of time.
- If you show signs of hearing loss, you will want to get it checked right away, and then yearly after that.
It will be easier to identify any hearing loss before any warning signs become apparent with routine examinations. You will have a better chance of protecting your hearing over time the sooner you get tested. Which means, you should probably turn your TV down and make an appointment for a hearing test.