Unhappy girl suffering from hearing loss with glass of drink expressing sadness and loneliness while her friends having fun and enjoying a festive BBQ dinner in the background

It’s not like you just wake up one day, and your hearing is gone. Hearing loss, particularly when it’s caused by aging, usually advances in degrees. You may not recognize it’s occurring immediately but some signs do appear earlier.

The early symptoms of progressive hearing loss are subtle. Slowing down the development of hearing loss and its associated health problems is a matter of early detection. But if you don’t know what the early symptoms are, you won’t be capable of recognizing if you have them. You may be developing hearing loss if you notice any of the following eight barely detectable signs.

1. Some voices you can’t hear very well, others you can

Maybe when you talk to your brother, you can understand him fine, but when your wife speaks, some words just seem to get lost. It’s a typical indication that the nerves that transmit messages to the brain are damaged (known as sensorineural hearing loss).

Her voice is less clear to you because it’s higher in pitch. You may have the same issue with your grandchild or daughter. Even higher pitched tones like the phone ringing or alarm clock can get lost. Those tones are high, too.

2. You avoid phone conversations

When the phone rings you tend to make excuses for not picking it up:

  • I get tons of spam calls – that’s probably what it is
  • It’s a new phone, and I’m simply not used to it yet

Consider why you dread using your phone. If you have the volume at max and can’t hear what is being said, let a friend test the phone for you. You most likely have a hearing loss issue if you can’t hear the voice but your friend can.

3. Why is everybody mumbling?

It seems as if it’s no longer just the kids who are mumbling when they talk, it’s your neighbor, the news woman, your partner, and even your bartender. It’s hard to imagine that everyone in your life suddenly has poor enunciation so this is a good indication of hearing loss. How you hear words is changing. One of the first indications that something is going on with your hearing is when it sounds like people are mumbling and consonants like “S” and “T” are dropping off.

4. What?

It might not be until someone points out that you’re saying “what?” a lot that you realize you are developing hearing loss. Very often the people you see every day like coworkers or family are the first to observe you are struggling to hear. You should certainly pay attention if somebody says something.

5. Why do I hear ringing noises in my ears?

This sign is somewhat more obvious, but unless it becomes a distraction, people tend to ignore it. Tinnitus, the medical term for the ringing or buzzing in the ear, is a prevalent symptom of hearing loss.

Tinnitus can also be intermittent because triggers are a significant factor. For example, maybe the ringing, buzzing, or roaring only happens in the morning or when you are tired. Or, it could also be a symptom of high blood pressure, circulatory issues, or trauma.

If you’re noticing these symptoms you should make an appointment for an exam because they may be a sign that you’re having a health problem.

6. Meeting your friends at the neighborhood barbecue isn’t as fun

Once again, there are those mumbling people, and that’s not fun. Also, being in loud places makes understanding what individuals say that much harder. Something as simple as kids playing and splashing around in the pool or the sound of the AC kicking on you makes it extremely tough to hear anything. And, you always feel exhausted from trying to keep up with conversations.

7. You’re normally not this worn out

Battling to understand words is draining. You feel more tired than normal because your brain needs to work harder to try and interpret what it’s attempting to hear. You might even experience changes in your other senses. How much energy is left for eyesight, for example, if your brain is spending so much of its energy attempting to hear and understand words? If your eyes have tested fine, now it’s time to have your hearing checked.

8. Why is this TV volume so low?

When you have to keep turning the volume up on your TV, it becomes all too easy to place the blame on your service provider or that out-dated TV. When you’re experiencing hearing loss it’s hard to follow along with dialog on your favorite shows. Dialogue is being jumbled by background music and sound effects. What about the other stuff in the room such as the AC or the ceiling fan? If you keep turning the volume up, then your hearing could be failing.

Fortunately, all it takes to know for certain is a professional hearing assessment and if it turns out your hearing is declining, hearing aids will help you get back to normal.

Give us a call today to make an appointment for a hearing test if you’ve detected any of the above signs.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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