Healthy hearing is an important part of a happy life. Hearing loss causes several physiological and psychological problems. A person with hearing loss ceases to hear external sounds, voices of loved ones. He also loses the ability to communicate and even can loose orientation in space.
The patient has problems with socialization, depression, etc. We always encourage our patients to learn about the first signs of hearing impairment.
Why is it important?
Many Americans are confident that hearing loss will not affect them. Unfortunately, it’s not just newborns or the elderly who suffer from the problem. Hearing impairment can occur at any age, even in teenagers and young adults. The first signs are usually noticeable before serious complications. According to statistics, over 35 million Americans suffer from some form of hearing impairment. And this number is growing every year.
Modern medicine has tools and technologies to help these people return to a happy and fulfilling life. One of the most important factors of treatment is time. Some Americans don’t pay attention to the first signs of hearing loss. They don’t test their hearing and think that this is an “elderly problem”. It leads to the development of the impairment and the difficulty of treatment. In addition, untreated hearing loss doesn’t go away on its own and causes even greater difficulties. One of the complications is called auditory deprivation. This is a condition where the brain has difficulty understanding and processing information due to the lack of sound stimulation. For example, a person may “hear” the sounds of someone speaking, but his brain won’t be able to understand the used words.
In most patients, hearing loss occurs gradually. The average period from the first onset of symptoms to medical examination, in this case, is 5-7 years. Unfortunately, late diagnosis of the problem complicates treatment, which in turn complicates successful rehabilitation and return to normal life.
Therefore, remember, If you notice the first hearing loss symptoms in yourself or a loved one, then don’t waste time. Sensorineural and conductive hearing loss occurs in 90% of cases. The sooner you see an audiologist, the easier and more effective the treatment will be!
What are the first signs of hearing loss?
Hearing loss causes depend on its type. For example, daily-prolonged noise exposure (noisy work, hobbies, use of headphones, etc.) often leads to sensorineural hearing loss. It, unlike sudden hearing loss, develops gradually. A person may not be aware that something is happening to his hearing, attributing the problem to stress, fatigue, etc. Precious time is running out while he continues to live his daily life.
Dr. Stella Fulman highlights the following first hearing loss symptoms, on which you should pay attention:
You are often asked to turn down music or TV, although the volume seems to be quite comfortable for you
Loss of the topic of conversation, especially in noisy situations
Frequent requests to repeat or asking “what” all the time
You don’t understand some sounds, such as children’s or women’s voices, birdsong, etc.
Feeling physically and mentally exhausted at the end of the day or conversation
Frequent mood swings, irritation, and stress from noises, voices, etc.
Hissing and dull sounds (for example, sh, th, f, etc.) are inaudible
The appearance of ringing or other noises in the ears
As you understand, the listed symptoms indicate the problem.
What should I do?
Don’t panic and get upset. It won’t help. Don’t waste your time! Get a hearing test. Contact hearing care professionals who know how to help you as soon as possible. At Audiology Island we will carry out diagnostics using modern equipment and prescribe treatment based on its results. Today we have effective tools, which can help you regain your lost abilities. For example, newer hearing aids differ significantly from earlier models. They have become more compact and functional!
Don’t forget about preventive measures that help prevent hearing loss or further deterioration of the condition. Dr. Stella Fulman recommends paying attention to the following tips:
Rest after exposure to high levels of noise. If you’ve had a busy day, relax and enjoy the silence. Your ears need rest, too
Avoid prolonged noise exposure (concerts, parties, etc.). Depending on the noise level, you should not spend too much time at such events without ear protection.
Use the headphones correctly. Today, loud music has become a significant factor in hearing loss, especially among teenagers. Therefore, don’t listen to music too loudly and reduce the time you use the headphones
Get a hearing test annually, even if you don’t feel any problems or symptoms. It will help identify the impairment at an early stage
Wear earplugs. It’s true not only for workers in noisy environments. Remember to wear swimming earplugs that will save you from a swimmer’s ear
Treat colds in time
These simple tips are effective. Therefore, try to perform them. Then your life will be full of happy moments and the voices of loved ones!
About Dr Stella Fulman
Dr. Stella Fulman, AU.D., CCC-A received her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Audiology from Brooklyn College in 2004 and her Doctorate of Audiology from Salus University in 2008. [ Learn More ]