4 Hidden Signs of Hearing Loss
If you suffer from hearing loss, you might think it would be obvious, right?
Well, that’s exactly the issue; most people assume it would. Unfortunately, while severe or sudden hearing loss is easy to identify, mild to moderate developing hearing loss can be far too subtle to observe. That’s the reason why, on average, people will wait more than five years from the beginning of symptoms to seek help.
Imagine hearing loss as a gradual leak in a tire. It’s challenging to detect the everyday changes, and it’s only when the tire goes flat, and your car is no longer drivable, that you choose to take action.
Regrettably, while tires are replaceable, your hearing is not. It can be in some measure restored, but the sooner you deal with your hearing loss the more of your hearing you’ll get back.
So how can you recognize the symptoms of early-stage hearing loss? Here are some of the hidden signs that indicate you should get a professional hearing exam.
1. Trouble hearing specific sounds
Commonly people believe that hearing loss impacts all types of sounds. Therefore, if you can hear some sounds normally, you presume you can hear all sounds normally.
Don’t get caught up into this manner of thinking. The reality is that hearing loss predominately impacts higher-frequency sounds. You may observe that you have particular difficulty hearing the voices of women and children, as an example, owing to the higher pitch.
This may possibly lead you to think that the individuals you can’t hear are mumbling, when in fact, you have high-frequency hearing loss.
2. Depending on context to comprehend speech
Somebody is talking from behind you and you can’t understand what they’re saying unless you turn around. You are forced to depend on body language, and possibly lip reading, for supplementary information to fill in the blanks.
Speech is composed of an array of frequencies, from low to high, with consonants representing the high frequencies and vowels representing the lower frequencies. The issue for people with high-frequency hearing loss is that consonants communicate the the majority of the meaning yet are the most difficult to hear.
If you have hearing loss, speech comprehension is just like reading a sentence with missing letters. Most of the time, you’ll get it right, but when you don’t, you may find yourself responding inappropriately or asking people to repeat themselves frequently. You may also have difficulty hearing on the phone.
3. Difficulty hearing in noisy surroundings
With mild hearing loss, you can typically decode what other people are saying, albeit with lots of effort. As soon as background noise is introduced, on the other hand, the task often becomes overwhelming.
You may discover that it’s overwhelming to hear in group settings or in noisy environments like restaurants or social gatherings. The contending sounds and background noise are muffling your already affected hearing, making it exceedingly difficult to concentrate on any one source of sound.
4. Listening Fatigue
Finally, you may notice that you’re more fatigued than normal after work or after engagement in group settings. For individuals with hearing loss, the persistent fight to hear, together with the effort to grasp incomplete sounds, can contribute to serious exhaustion, which is a non-obvious sign of hearing loss.
Hearing loss is progressive and becomes more difficult to treat the longer you delay. If you experience any of these signs and symptoms, even if they’re only minor, we strongly encourage scheduling a hearing test. By taking action sooner, you can preserve your hearing and stay connected to your family and friends.