Hearing is one of those things people don’t tend to give much thought to. It’s something people often take for granted and just assume all is good, that is until it’s not. Hearing loss can be a gradual thing that happens over years, or it can happen suddenly. Either can be a cause of stress, fear and confusion and will certainly make hearing a top concern. So what should you do if your hearing isn’t as sharp as usual? What if you notice changes?
Here are some simple steps you can take to address the issue.
Watch for the Warning Signs
If the hearing loss isn’t sudden and profound, then it’s quite common that the warning signs go unnoticed. People can often pass them off as ‘no big deal’, or not even be aware of them. This is why it’s important to know the signs to watch for.
Some early signs that hearing loss may be affecting you include:
- You often have to ask people to repeat themselves.
- You are watching television at a higher volume.
- You can hear sound but aren’t sure where exactly it’s coming from.
- Noisy environments make it hard for you to understand others.
- You hear ringing in your ear(s), tinnitus.
- You rely on others to listen to you.
- You have a hard time hearing on the phone.
- Social gatherings make you feel exhausted because it’s hard to hear.
You may only have one or two of these signs, but even still it’s worth investigating further.
Schedule an Appointment with Your GP
After identifying warning signs, it’s best to schedule an appointment with your GP. If hearing loss is sudden, the appointment should be made immediately. They can then look for specific issues and most likely refer you to a hearing specialist which is called an audiologist. A hearing test will likely be recommended to check if indeed you are losing your hearing, and what the extent is.
What are the Treatment Options?
Depending on the results of your hearing test, you may need a treatment plan. It could be as simple as wax removal to address a feeling of fullness in the ear, decreased hearing and even a ringing noise, or perhaps you’d benefit from hearing aids. It’s worth noting that hearing aids have come a long way since their invention, and today you can even get invisible hearing aids. These are extended wear designs that a professional will place in your ear canal so they are invisible to others. They can stay in place for months, are comfortable and provide you with excellent hearing 24/7 since you aren’t removing them. You can click here to read more about these types of hearing aids and how they are used.
The important thing for people to understand is that ignoring a hearing issue won’t help the situation. Any type of hearing loss should warrant a visit to your GP as there may be a simple solution or something that requires a treatment plan.