It is easy to put something like hearing loss on the back burner and leave it for another day. Perhaps you’re embarrassed about your hearing loss. Maybe you think it’s nothing to worry about – that it’s just temporary and everything will be fine. Or, you’re worried about the stigma of growing old.
Hearing loss affects 50% of adults ages 75+. And despite the negative impact it has on their lives, it’s these sorts of reactions that mean many adults postpone seeking treatment.
Hearing loss isn’t only related to aging, though. Other causes can include injuries, loud noises, diseases, and other circumstances. However, by ignoring the signs of hearing loss, you are susceptible to a whole other league of challenges such as anxiety, depression, social isolation, fatigue, dementia, and so much more.
Adults under the age of 75 can also experience hearing loss. This includes infants and children. In fact, two to three children out of every 1,000 children are born with a moderate or severe hearing loss in one or both ears. If regular hearing tests aren’t performed, these children may grow up having an untreated hearing loss.
Having poor hearing as a child can affect many aspects of their life. Their speech and language development, communication skills, social skills, and education can all be affected. That’s why early detection is so important. Their quality of life majorly depends on it.
The good news is that hearing loss is treatable. Below we explore the early signs of hearing loss in adults and children. If any of these situations seem familiar, Audiology Associates highly recommends seeing an audiologist for a hearing test.
Early Signs of Hearing Loss in Adults
- Communication difficulties – Keeping up with and participating in conversations becomes a guessing game. You may find it hard to keep track of who is saying what in group situations. You may find yourself shaking your head in agreement to a person’s comment and then desperately hoping they don’t ask for a more detailed response. This can become extremely stressful and nerve-wracking.
It may seem like everyone is mumbling, and you find yourself asking people to repeat themselves much more often. If someone is facing away from you while speaking, or you are talking on the phone, it is more difficult to understand what they are saying without the visual cues. Although you struggle to hear conversations clearly, random background noise is a regular companion.
- A need for increased volume – The TV never seems to be loud enough. So you turn up the volume to higher levels than normal. Your family is constantly complaining the TV or the radio is too loud.
- A change in your social life and well-being – Instead of attending social events, you choose to stay at home, isolating yourself from family and friends. You may find your memory and cognitive functions aren’t as sharp as usual. You often feel tired – trying to process words and sounds you are struggling to hear is exhausting.
Early Sign of Hearing Loss in Children
- Delayed development – Your child may demonstrate delayed language development or sound production in comparison to other children their age. At three months old, babies should be able to make cooing sounds. At six months old, they should be able to babble. By the time they are 12 months old, they should be able to say a few words similar to other children their age.
Other developmental signs include not responding to sounds around them when they are under one year, not responding or reacting to their name when they are a year old, and not reacting appropriately to nearby loud or sudden noises.
- Following instructions – Whether at home, nursery, or school, your child struggles to follow simple instructions.
- Ear discomfort – Your child is constantly pulling or tugging at their ears.
The importance of early detection
As explained above, having a hearing loss can negatively impact your life. The earlier it is identified, the easier it is to treat.
By not doing so, it is easy to slip into isolation – and this can lead to depression, loneliness, and other difficult situations. Because your brain isn’t as stimulated anymore, hearing loss can lead to Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Your brain can simply become exhausted from trying to fill in the missing sounds and this can affect your overall sense of well-being and happiness.
Resound hearing aids
Hearing aids are small devices that are worn either inside or behind your ears. Earlier types of hearing aids were often clunky and cumbersome, but with today’s technology, they are tiny, discreet, and packed with various features.
Established in 1943, Resound has won many awards throughout the years, and their customers’ testimonials rate them highly. Today’s Resound hearing aids not only amplify sound, but they are also programmed according to your level of hearing loss so you can continue to live life to the fullest.
They come in many different styles with a range of features to choose from. Some of the styles and features include:
- Digital hearing aids
- Invisible hearing aids
- Bluetooth compatibility
- Rechargeable batteries
- Receiver-in-ear style
- Custom-made design
- Behind the ear style
- Tinnitus reducing/masking
- Smartphone compatible
Their advanced technology works alongside the brain’s ability to take in sounds. They can be tailored to help you hear what you want, keeping your budget and lifestyle in mind.
Schedule your hearing test today
Don’t delay your hearing test any longer – no more excuses, no need to worry. Enjoy conversations, socializing, and get the most out of life again.
At Audiology Associates, our doctors and staff are committed to helping our patients on their journey to better hearing. With nine convenient Maryland locations, we offer you individualized care and support. Book your hearing test today by contacting Audiology Associates here.