You know what it’s like to try to disregard a toothache? It can be very hard. At some point, you end up having no choice but to see a dentist. The same thing occurs when your eyesight begins to blur. When you have trouble reading street signs, you’ll probably make an appointment with an ophthalmologist. But the concern is, when your hearing begins to go you may not show such urgency.
And that could be an oversight. There are significant health issues (particularly mental health issues) that can develop as a result of untreated hearing loss. Unfortunately, it’s pretty hard to address your diminishing hearing if you aren’t aware of it. And that’s difficulty number two.
You Might Have Hearing Loss if You Notice These Symptoms
We typically don’t appreciate our hearing. A loud performance? No biggie. Blaring ear pods? That’s just how you enjoy your podcasts. But your overall hearing will be considerably impacted by all of these decisions, particularly over time.
It can, regrettably, be hard to detect these impacts. The indications of hearing loss can be nearly invisible because they sneak up so slowly over time. That’s why it’s a good idea to identify some basic red flags (and to take care of them sooner than later):
- Distorted or muffled sounding speech from individuals around you (co-workers, family, friends)
- You can’t keep a set of earbuds because you keep blowing the speakers
- You always have to crank up the volume on your devices
- You frequently need to ask individuals to repeat what they said
- When you’re in a crowded noisy situation you have a difficult time following conversations
- You have a hard time falling asleep at night and feel tired for no reason
- You notice unexpected issues with short term memory
- When you listen to casual speech, you have an especially tough time hearing consonants
It’s fairly well known what these red flags and signs mean. At first, you will be somewhat unaware of your symptoms, especially if they come on gradually, because your brain will immediately start to compensate. That’s the reason why all of these warning signs should be taken seriously, which means you need to schedule an appointment to see your hearing specialist.
What Happens if You Neglect Your Hearing Loss?
Some individuals are, certainly, stubborn. Or the idea of wearing hearing aids is just too unwelcome. They assume that wearing hearing aids causes them to look old. But that isn’t really the situation (the majority of hearing aids can be very discreet, and being capable of conversing fluently is a boon, too).
Still, if you ignore hearing loss it could result in several issues:
- Your hearing may get worse: Without a hearing aid or enhanced ear protection, You’ll keep turning up your devices. Or you’ll keep intending to rock shows without any earplugs. And your hearing will keep diminishing as you continue doing damage to your ears.
- You may have tense relationships: When you have a hard time comprehending what your friends and relatives are saying, something can change in the relationship: you begin having fewer interactions with them. You stop saying hi, you stop checking in, you distance yourself. Some of those relationships will be hurt, particularly if the issue is hearing loss that you have kept secret (and not because you’re angry at them).
- You could suffer from cognitive decline and depression: As your relationships falter and going out gets more challenging, you may begin to experience signs of depression. You might also start to experience some mental decline if your brain doesn’t receive the auditory stimulation that it’s used to, certain changes begin to take place within your neural physiology. This can lead to long term cognitive challenges if your hearing loss isn’t managed.
Don’t Ignore Your Hearing Loss
Surely, neglecting your hearing loss can cause bigger and more significant issues later on. But the opposite is true: recognizing and treating your hearing loss can enhance your quality of life significantly. Your daily life is more full and your relationships get better when you start to hear better. And improving your awareness, either by seeing a hearing specialist or downloading a noise-monitoring app, can enhance your overall hearing health.
You definitely shouldn’t ignore the health problem of hearing loss. A happier life starts when you find the correct treatment. Manage your hearing loss before it gets too severe to ignore.