You’re not quite certain why, but you’ve been feeling cranky lately. Well, it was annoying earlier this morning when you felt left out of the meeting at work. Your daughter got up and abruptly left the house after becoming irritated when you kept asking her to turn the TV volume up. Why would she do that?
Perhaps the real issue is hearing loss!
Hearing loss is an issue for about 40 million people in the US and can sneak up on you with age. And, the problem doesn’t end at your ears, either. Research shows that even mild hearing loss puts you at risk for memory issues, cognitive decline, and even depression. You could have a manageable medical condition causing your hearing loss but you think it’s just an indication of aging. Perhaps, you missed significant conversational cues and your coworkers didn’t actually leave you out of the meeting after all. The truth is, if you can’t hear properly during your day-to-day life, it can become incredibly frustrating.
Get the facts about hearing loss
A good place to start is discovering more about what you’re coping with. Hearing loss does happen to many people as a result of the aging process. But years of exposure to overly loud noise can also be the cause for others. Noise-related hearing loss can be caused by lots of noise sources, including mowing the lawn and leaf blowing, listening to loud music, and driving in heavy traffic with the window down. The world is full of potentially ear-damaging noise that can deteriorate the fragile mechanisms that help you hear.
Chronic diseases that become more prevalent as we age are a possible factor as well. High blood pressure, for example, or diabetes can both affect blood flow, which can cause damage to the inner ear.
Recognize the signs
People often take their hearing for granted, so when it begins to fail they don’t detect the signs:
- You’re always asking people to repeat what they said or even worse, saying ‘what’ all of the time
- Struggling to understand words when there is background noise like a fan or the AC
- You always feel like you are being left out of the conversations
If you detect any of these hearing loss signs, it’s no wonder you’re cranky! Feeling separated from your world can result in depression and even social solitude.
Create a plan to treat hearing loss
One of the first things you can do is ask family and friends if they have noticed you having a difficult time hearing. It may seem like a difficult discussion but it’s a really worthwhile one. If the answer is ‘yes’ then scheduling a hearing exam should be your next step and will simplify things for you. Try to get a family member to go along with you to your exam. It can be helpful to have a calm and supportive friend with you.
Your hearing test will not only help to establish your hearing loss but it will also gauge the extent of it. If hearing loss is determined, we will advise the next course of action for you depending on the results of the test. Typically, hearing aids will be a principal part of the treatment plan. Don’t worry, there are so many choices and features that you’re sure to find hearing aids that are perfect for your lifestyle!
How to pick quality hearing aids
We’ll have suggestions that will be best suited for your unique type of hearing loss. Take some to time find the right brand and model for your needs, this might require testing several styles and models. Hearing aids don’t just amplify sound these days. They can identify the direction that sound is originating from, block out background noise, and even connect to smartphones and computers. Do some research to find out which brands and models provide the features that will best fit your lifestyle and needs.
And, don’t forget to think about styles. They come in lots of fashionable colors or with no color at all, so they are virtually invisible.
If you think you’re experiencing hearing loss, schedule an appointment with our qualified hearing specialists today. It’s time to get out of that grumpy mindset and we can help!