You know what it’s like to try to ignore a toothache? They can be rather rough. Sooner or later, you’re absolutely begging to go see a dentist. And when your eyesight begins to lose focus it’s the same. When you have difficulties reading street signs, you’ll most likely schedule a consultation with an ophthalmologist. The concern is, you might not show quite so much urgency when your hearing begins to go.
And that may be a mistake. There are appreciable health issues (especially mental health issues) that can develop as a result of neglected hearing loss. Regrettably, it’s pretty hard to address your diminishing hearing if you don’t know about it. And that’s difficulty number two.
Signs You Might Have Hearing Loss
We typically don’t appreciate our hearing. A high volume music festival? No big deal.. Blasting ear pods? That’s just how you like your podcasts. But all of those decisions, particularly in the long run, is going to have a significant impact on your overall hearing.
It can, regrettably, be difficult to notice these impacts. The signs of hearing loss can be nearly invisible because they sneak up so slowly over time. So you should take some time to educate yourself on some primary red flags (and to take care of them sooner than later):
- You usually have to crank up the volume on your devices
- You can’t maintain a set of earbuds because you keep blowing the speakers
- You have a difficult time falling asleep at night and feel fatigued for no apparent reason
- When you listen to everyday speech, you have an especially difficult time making out consonants
- You experience unexpected issues with short term memory
- Distorted or dull sounding voices from people near you (co-workers, family, friends)
- You regularly have to ask individuals to repeat what they said
- It’s hard to understand conversations in noisy or crowded surroundings
It’s pretty well known what these red flags and symptoms mean. At first, you will be somewhat ignorant of your symptoms, especially if they come on slowly, because your brain will instantly begin to compensate. That’s the reason why any of these warning symptoms should be taken seriously, which means you should schedule an appointment to see your hearing specialist.
What Going to Happen if You Neglect Your Hearing Loss?
Some individuals are, certainly, obstinate. Or the idea of wearing hearing aids is simply too undesirable. They maintain this fear that wearing a hearing aid is some kind of immediate sign for old age (as though continuously asking people to speak up is a sign of everlasting youth). But that isn’t really the situation (the majority of hearing aids can be very discreet, and being able to converse fluently is a boon, too).
Still, if you ignore hearing loss it may lead to numerous problems:
- Your relationships could diminish: When you have a tough time understanding what your family and friends are saying, something can change in the relationship: you begin having fewer conversations with them. You stop calling to say hi, you don’t keep up with what’s happening with them, you disengage. Some of those relationships will be hurt, especially if the problem is hearing loss that you have kept secret (and not some unspoken animosity).
- You could cause your hearing to get worse: Without a hearing aid or enhanced ear protection, You’ll continue to turn up your devices. Or you won’t utilize earplugs when you attend rock concerts. And your hearing will continue diminishing as you keep to do harm to your ears.
- Depression and cognitive decline could result: You may begin to discover signs of depression as your relationships falter and going out becomes more challenging. You may also start to go through some cognitive decline without the auditory stimulation your brain is used to, your neural physiology begins to experience specific changes. This can lead to long term cognitive problems if your hearing loss isn’t managed.
Hearing Loss Shouldn’t be Neglected
Down the road, clearly, bigger and more significant issues can be caused by hearing loss. But the opposite is true: recognizing and managing your hearing loss can enhance your quality of life substantially. Your daily life is more full and your relationships get better when you start to hear better. And increasing your awareness, either by seeing a hearing specialist or downloading a noise-monitoring app, can enhance your complete hearing health.
You absolutely shouldn’t ignore the health concern of hearing loss. A happier life begins when you find the right treatment. Take care of your hearing loss before it gets too severe to ignore.