Age-Related Hearing Loss

Age-Related Hearing Loss

Have you been struggling to hear, or having difficulty keeping up with conversations? Hearing loss is a lot more common than you think, with half of all seniors over the age of 65 straining to hear. This means that either you or someone you love will have hearing loss in the next few years. Yet only 1 in 5 Americans seek treatment for their hearing loss!

Hearing Loss Is Underdiagnosed

Hearing loss is a major problem for Americans, yet few people are looking after their hearing health. It’s recommended that after the age of 60 you get your hearing tested once a year to monitor your hearing health. Whether caused by exposure to noise throughout your life, or from age related hearing loss, by the age of 70 almost two thirds of people will have hearing loss! Sadly, many people put off getting their hearing tested for many years and choose to live with the negative outcomes of hearing loss.

The First Signs of Hearing Loss

The first signs of hearing loss are often hard to detect. Hearing loss is a gradual process, and your brain is very good at making small adjustments, so you don’t even notice your hearing isn’t as sharp as it once was. Without realizing it, you’ll turn your better ear in the direction of the person speaking or turn up the volume on the TV. In fact, your family is often the first to notice that you’re struggling to hear. The first signs of hearing loss are missing sounds you used to be able to hear, like the ringing of the phone, or someone asking you a question from across the room. You’ll also notice that you’re starting to miss sounds in high frequencies, like the chirping of birds, or the sounds of your grandkids playing in the backyard. Another early sign is having a lot of difficulty following conversations in places with a lot of background noise, like a crowded restaurant or at a family dinner.

Hearing Loss Is Undertreated

If you have hearing loss, you’ll face a lot of negative outcomes other than missing some words in conversations. Those living with untreated hearing loss have a hard time communicating effectively, since they can’t hear clearly. Communication with friends and loved ones starts to break down, and you risk losing all those little intimate moments that make relationships meaningful. As you find it even hard to keep up a conversation, you might choose to stay home from social events rather than face the embarrassment of answering inappropriately or being confused. Living with untreated hearing loss leads to feelings of social isolation, and increased rates of stress, anxiety, and depression.

Living with hearing loss also greatly increases your chances of cognitive decline and memory impairment and leaves you more vulnerable to degenerative conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s. As your hearing gets worse, you aren’t using your brain to its full capacity while other processes are sacrificed to make sense of muddled sound. Studies have shown that those with hearing loss actually have less grey matter in their brains compared to those who treat their hearing loss.

Getting a New Hearing Aid

You may think that a hearing aid just isn’t for you. After all, your friend had a hearing aid 15 years ago. It was clunky and obvious and didn’t seem to work very well. Modern hearing technology has come a long way in the last few years, with sleek, sophisticated devices that are tailored to match your exact hearing needs.

Hearing aids of today are extremely small, and match your skin tone, so no one will notice them. Sitting snugly behind the ear, or even within the ear canal, some hearing devices are nearly invisible! They contain advanced programs and features, like noise reduction, directionality, and speech enhancement to help you hear in any environment. Not only that, but many of today’s models feature state-of-the-art connectivity, meaning you can connect your hearing aids to your smartphone for advanced streaming, as well as clear hearing for every phone call.

If you’re ready to get your hearing diagnosed and treated, visit us today at My Hearing Centers. We’ll provide a complete hearing assessment and give you the best advice on what hearing aid will fit easily into your lifestyle to get you back to hearing.