Most types of hearing loss develop slowly over time. This means that you may not notice you are experiencing symptoms until your hearing loss has progressed beyond an easily treatable stage. In fact, the average person waits seven years before they seek treatment.
Understanding the signs of hearing loss can make sure you seek treatment early, leading to the best outcomes.
Below are the most common early signs of hearing loss.
Following Conversations Is Hard
Hearing loss is caused by damage to the inner ear. One of the first things to go is your ability to detect high-pitched tones. Since background noise is usually low-pitched, while most speech sounds are high, your ears find it easier to hear the sounds in the background rather than those coming from the people around you.
Feelings Like Your Ears Are Clogged
If your doctor reports there is nothing in your ears, but they still feel clogged, this is a strong indication that you may be experiencing early signs of hearing loss. Hearing loss caused by aging can cause sounds to seem dull of muffled. This sensation is similar to a clogged feeling in the ear.
Turning the Volume on the TV Up
On most television programs, dialogue, sounds effects and background music are played at the same time. Since mild hearing loss affects your ability to hear high tones, you can often hear the bass tones of the music and sound effects better than the banter between the characters. In order to follow the plot, you may find yourself turning the volume up.
Straining to Hearing Children Speak
The voices of children and woman are often the first that are difficult to hear, since they are higher in pitch.
Feeling Exhausted After Social Events
When you have hearing loss, your brain is getting limited information. In order to make up for that, your brain will try to fill in the gaps by exerting more effort to make sense of what others are saying. At the end of a social event, you may feel exhausted from the additional mental strain, especially if you have tried to carry on a conversation with more than one person at a time.
Focusing on Lip Reading Over Eye Contact
Another thing your brain will do to try to fill in the missing pieces is watch the lips of people as they speak. If you find you are lip reading rather than looking someone in the eyes when they are talking, this tells you that your brain is searching for more information than your ears are providing.
If you think you may have hearing loss, contact the experts at Indiana Hearing Specialists today to get started on your journey toward better hearing.