Did you know that one in two people age 65 and older have some degree of hearing loss? According to the Mayo Clinic website, gradual hearing loss is common as we age. It can have a negative impact on quality of life, but it doesn’t have to. Rather than avoiding social occasions, not participating in conversations, and increasing the risk of becoming anxious or depressed, why not solve the problem?
Step one is recognizing the symptoms of hearing loss. They include:
· Conversations and other sounds being muffled
· Trouble hearing when there is background noise or when you’re in a group of people
· Having to ask others to repeat what they’ve said
· Having to ask people to speak more slowly, clearly and/or loudly
· Needing to turn up the volume when listening to music, television or radio
For some reason, many people deny having hearing issues, but it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Just like any other health issue, reporting your symptoms to your healthcare provider is the next step. After listening to what you’ve been experiencing, he or she will likely refer you to an audiologist – a healthcare professional who specializes in diagnosing and treating hearing and balance issues.
Step three is to work with your audiologist to identify the reason for your hearing loss, evaluate the degree to which it has progressed, and decide on the best course of treatment. With the assistance of hearing aids or other interventions, the vast majority of people notice significant improvement. They are able to regain the ability tune in and chime in on conversations with friends and loved ones better than they have in a very long time.