When is it time to get a hearing exam? You need a hearing exam if you have any of these four signs.
The other day, my kids complained about how loud my television was. And guess what my reply was. I said, “What”? It was humorous. Because it was a joke. But it also wasn’t. I have needed to turn the TV up increasingly louder as of late. And that got me thinking that maybe it’s time for a hearing test.
There aren’t all that many excuses not to schedule yourself for a hearing test. They’re not invasive, there’s no radiation, you don’t need to worry about discomfort. You’ve probably just been putting it off.
You should really be more vigilant about keeping track of your hearing because, if left untreated, it can impact your overall health.
Hearing evaluations are essential for many reasons. It’s often difficult for you to identify the earliest signs of hearing loss without one, and even mild hearing loss can impact your health.
So how can you recognize if you should make an appointment? Here are some signs that it’s time.
Signs you should get a hearing test
It’s time to get a professional hearing test if you’ve been experiencing signs of hearing loss recently. Clearly, it’s a strong indication of hearing loss if you’re having a hard time hearing.
But that’s not the only indicator, and there are some signs of hearing loss that are far less apparent:
- You always miss alerts for text messages: Mobile devices are made to be loud enough for you to be able to hear. So if you’re continuously missing calls or text messages, it may be because you aren’t hearing them. And perhaps, when you think about it, you’re missing out on more everyday sounds.
- You have a tough time hearing when you’re in a loud environment: Have you ever had a hard time following along with conversations because of ambient noise in a busy room? If this sounds familiar you could be experiencing hearing loss. As your hearing goes from healthy to impaired, one of the first signs is the loss of the ability to identify distinct sounds.
- Ringing that won’t subside: Ringing in your ears, which is called tinnitus, is typically a sign of hearing damage. If you’re dealing with some ringing that won’t stop, it may or may not be a symptom of hearing loss. But it’s definitely an indication that you should schedule a hearing test.
- It sounds like everybody’s mumbling all the time: Sometimes, it’s not loss of volume you need to worry about, it’s a loss of distinction. One of the first signs of hearing loss is trouble following conversations. It might be time for a hearing screening if you detect this occurring more and more frequently.
Here are a few other situations that show you should schedule a hearing exam:
- You have a buildup of ear wax you’re body can’t clear on your own
- you’re experiencing an ear infection and it won’t clear up
- You experience vertigo
- It’s difficult to pinpoint the origin of sounds
- You take specific medications that can harm your hearing
This list, obviously, is not extensive. There are other instances of red flags (if, for example, the volume on your TV is maxed out and you still wish it could go just a little louder). It would be a smart plan to follow up on any of these symptoms.
But how should you cope with it when you’re not sure if you have any symptoms of hearing loss. Is there a guideline for how often you should schedule a hearing exam? There’s a guideline for everything else, right, so there’s got to be a guideline for this. Well, yes, there are suggestions.
- Get a baseline test done sometime after you’re 21. That way, you’ll have a baseline of your mature hearing.
- Every three years or so will be a good schedule if your hearing appears normal. That can be a long time to pay attention to, so make sure they’re noted in your medical records somewhere.
- You’ll want to get tested right away if you detect any signs of hearing loss and after that once a year.
It will be easier to discover any hearing loss before any red flags become apparent with regular screenings. You will have a better chance of protecting your hearing over time the sooner you get tested. So it’s time to pick up the phone and make an appointment for a hearing assessment.