How to Determine When You Need a Hearing Aid
Do you turn up the volume on the television, struggle to hear clearly in everyday conversation, or have difficulty separating background noise from spoken words? If so, you’re not alone.
Almost 36 million Americans suffer with some degree of hearing loss caused by a multitude of factors including age, genetics, exposure to loud machinery in the workplace, and more. Luckily, hearing aids can help many people with hearing loss regain their hearing and start engaging in conversation again.
What Are Hearing Aids?
Although they come in a variety of sizes with a host of different features, a hearing aid is essentially a wearable electronic device that helps people distinguish sounds more easily and hear spoken words more clearly, resulting in improved communication capability and better quality of life.
How Do I Know If I Need a Hearing Aid?
If you notice that some of the following scenarios apply to you, you might benefit from a hearing aid:
You Strain to Hear Conversations – Straining to make out words during a conversation can be exhausting. If you feel overly tired or have a headache after engaging in a normal conversation with co-workers or family members, you might have hearing loss.
Family Members Complain about High TV Volume – If the members of your household constantly tell you the television is too loud, you’re probably compensating for hearing loss.
You Don’t Hear Well in Noisy Environments – In a noisy atmosphere like a restaurant, people with hearing loss have difficulty separating background noise from spoken words, making for a frustrating social outing.
You Often Ask Others to Repeat Words – Occasionally asking someone to repeat a word or phrase is perfectly normal. Many people often mumble or speak too softly. However, if you find you are asking “What?” frequently, you should get a screening for hearing loss.
You Have Difficulty Understanding Women and Children – Women and children speak in a higher frequency than men do. Hearing loss is usually first noticeable in higher frequencies. If you have trouble making out the words spoken by your wife or young child, but can hear lower frequency speech by men, this could indicate the early stages of hearing loss.
You Can’t Follow a Conversation with Multiple Speakers – You might do fairly well when speaking with a single person, but if you strain to follow a conversation with more than one participant while they talk over one other, you might need a hearing evaluation.
Other common symptoms of hearing loss include:
- Trouble hearing conversations on the telephone
- Feeling like everyone is always mumbling
- Feeling annoyance and frustration during conversations
- Ringing or roaring sounds in one or both ears, called tinnitus
What Are the Benefits of Hearing Aids?
Using a hearing aid specifically designed for you can dramatically improve your life. In addition to being able to reconnect with friends and loved ones, studies show that people who wear hearing aids decrease their rate of cognitive decline in their later years, have greater earning potential in their careers, and enjoy a better overall quality of life.
Don’t be left out of the conversation. If you think you may be experiencing any level of hearing loss or tinnitus, contact the physicians at ENT Centers of Excellence or call our office at 251-943-1117 for an appointment. Serving patients in Daphne and Foley, Alabama, our team diagnoses and treats all disorders of the ears, nose, and throat.