Over the course of our lives, we spend more than 1,000 hours listening and talking. That means our ears are exposed to a lot of noise—and it’s not always good for them.
Many people do not realise they are experiencing hearing loss until it has become a significant problem if they recognise it at all. In fact, most people with significant hearing loss wait until family and friends express their concerns before consulting with a physician.
What is Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss occurs when the delicate hair cells in your inner ear are damaged or destroyed. These hair cells convert sound waves into electrical signals that travel through nerve fibres to the brain for interpretation. If these hair cells are damaged or destroyed, it can affect your ability to hear certain sounds and make it difficult for you to understand speech.
What are the Symptoms of Hearing Loss?
Several symptoms can indicate hearing loss. If you or someone you know is experiencing one or more of these, it may be time to have a hearing test:
- Having trouble understanding words in a conversation in noisy places
- Trouble hearing consonants such as S and F
- Difficulty understanding speech on the telephone and in crowded rooms
- Fatigue, stress or frustration when listening to others
- Repeatedly asking people to repeat themselves
It is crucial to have your hearing tested if you are experiencing one or more of the above symptoms. This can help ensure that there is no more serious underlying issue that needs to be addressed.
What Happens if You Don’t Treat Your Hearing Loss?
If you have hearing loss, you must get it treated. The longer you wait, the more your brain will adapt to the change in sound and eventually, it may become too difficult to treat your hearing loss. Here’s what can happen if you don’t treat your hearing loss:
- You’ll Lose Out on Social Interactions: If you need help hearing people speaking at normal volume levels, you may miss out on conversations with friends or coworkers. This can cause many negative effects on your relationships and even lead to depression. It can be hard to make new friends when people don’t know where they stand with each other because they need to figure out whether or not something was said.
- Depression: If you are experiencing hearing loss and don’t seek treatment, you’ll likely experience depression. Hearing loss can be very painful for people, and depression can result from this frustration or stress. Depression can also affect your relationships with friends and family members and how you view yourself.
- It Can Worsen If You Don’t Treat It: When you experience hearing loss and don’t seek treatment, your hearing will likely worsen over time. It will gradually become more difficult for you to communicate with others, making you feel isolated. If your hearing loss isn’t treated, you may eventually not be able to hear any sounds at all.
Hearing loss is a very common problem. While this may seem scary, it can be prevented and treated. Early detection of hearing loss is important to prevent further damage—and if you have already developed a significant hearing loss, many options are available for improving your quality of life.
Hearing care is integral to overall health, and it’s never too late to get the help you need. If you have trouble hearing, book an appointment with Country Hearing Care today. If you’re unsure if you need a hearing test, call us and we can help!