Hearing loss is a health concern that most people don’t even realize they have until it’s very noticeable – and even then, they may assume that it’s a temporary problem or that it’s not so problematic.

If no single significant event occurred that may have caused a sudden change in hearing ability, it’s typically a slow decline. These are among the most common signs that you or someone you know might have a hearing loss:

  • Asking people to repeat themselves often
  • Difficulty following conversations that involve more than two people
  • Thinking that others are mumbling or speaking quietly
  • Difficulty hearing speech in noisy situations
  • People commenting about how loud your TV or radio is
  • Inappropriate responses during conversation
  • Stress from straining to hear what others are saying
  • Withdrawing from enjoyable social situations more often
  • Family history of hearing loss
  • Taking medications that can harm the hearing system
  • Diabetes, heart, circulation, or thyroid problems
  • History of exposure to loud sounds at work or leisure

Family history of hearing loss

Family history of hearing loss

Loud noise exposure at work

History of exposure to loud sounds at work

TV volume turned too high

People commenting about TV noise

Hearing loss is usually gradual, and by identifying these symptoms, you’ve covered step one in the diagnosis process. But only an accurate hearing exam can reveal if you are having difficulty with specific sounds or if your hearing as a whole is suffering. Please contact us today to schedule an exam if you have identified one or more of these common signs of a hearing loss.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are some types of hearing loss easier to treat?
Hearing loss is a puzzle that our professionals love to solve, and it is based on your individual experiences, lifestyle, and severity of impairment. There is no one-size-fits-all treatment method for hearing loss — it’s based on the sounds that you can’t hear, which vary greatly, and the sounds that you want to be able to hear.A quality hearing system from a reputable manufacturer isn’t effective until an experienced Audiologist programs the hearing aids with the science and art to allow comfort of hearing, clarity and benefit.

Identifying the presence of hearing loss is only the first step. Education about the cause and treatment options are essential for proper management and hearing success. We are pleased to educate you about your hearing and available options.

Are there any health downsides to not treating hearing loss?
Research has established a relationship between hearing loss and dementia. There is strong evidence that hearing loss that is not treated accelerates shrinkage of brain-tissue especially in the areas of the brain that receives auditory input. This shrinkage occurs when the ear is not hearing and therefore cannot stimulate the brain with sound. Properly fit hearing aids help to maintain sound stimulation to the auditory areas of the brain and continue to allow for social engagement rather than withdrawing socially because of inability to hear and understand. In addition, those with a mild hearing loss are 3 times more likely to fall down as those without, and the likelihood of falls increases as degree of hearing loss increases. There’s more. Hearing loss has also been linked to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, smoking and other circulatory conditions.
At what age do people normally start getting hearing loss?
The onset of hearing loss varies among people based on lifestyle, family history and health. Most people don’t begin to experience symptoms until their 30’s and 40’s and by age 55, routine hearing exams become a greater importance. One-third of people beyond the age of 65 have some degree of hearing loss, however mild or severe, and that share in the elderly population increases as they age.
How can I improve my hearing?
Unfortunately, many forms of hearing loss are permanent because there is no cure. Treatment methods that feature amplification fit to your specific hearing loss by a hearing care professional typically have the highest user satisfaction for improved hearing and improved quality of life.
How can I prevent hearing loss?
Protecting your hearing from noise levels greater than 85 decibels at work and during leisurely activities will greatly reduce your chances of noise-induced hearing loss. Many manufacturing jobs require hearing protection in loud environments, but hearing protection is also recommended while ATV riding, hunting, attending concerts and sporting events, and playing music — all situations where your hearing is vulnerable.
Is hearing loss hereditary?
Though it is difficult to say what genetic factors predispose individuals to hearing loss, there seems to be a connection. Some genetic disorders present at birth cause a hearing loss, but in the absence of a disease, hearing loss can still have a basis in your genetics.
What should I do if I get sudden hearing loss?
See and ear specialist immediately such as an Ear, Nose and Throat physician; sudden hearing loss is considered a medical emergency. Sudden hearing loss typically resolves on its own within two weeks, but it might not — meaning your hearing might be gone for good. Seeking medical assistance within 72 hours of the onset of sudden hearing loss greatly improves the chances that your hearing will recover.