By Ashley Zifer, Au.D. CCC-A
Do I have hearing loss or does everyone else just mumble?
Hearing loss typically happens so gradually that it may be hard to notice something has changed. Sounds have slowly faded from your environment without you even knowing. You may ask yourself, “Why would I have a hearing loss?” Believe it or not, there are many causes of this disease making it hard to pinpoint the exact reason why you may be experiencing hearing difficulty. Some children are born with a hearing loss as a result of their genetic makeup. Hearing loss suddenly occurs with viral infections or autoimmune inner ear disease which requires immediate medical attention. Noise exposure without proper utilization of hearing protection devices can be extremely damaging to the inner ear. Aging is the most common cause of hearing loss; our ears are not made to last forever. Hearing loss can be temporary and medically treated by an Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialist. It is important to pay attention to the following signs or symptoms of hearing loss.
The most common type of hearing loss, presbycusis (age related hearing loss), greatly effects clarity of speech. You can hear that someone is talking but making out exactly what was said will be difficult. Individuals with undiagnosed hearing loss have the perception that “everyone mumbles” when in fact they are experiencing symptoms of a hearing impairment. Other symptoms of hearing loss include turning up the television, asking others to repeat, difficulty hearing speech in background noise, social withdrawal, or tinnitus (ringing in the ears). If you or your loved one experience any of these symptoms, it is essential to have your hearing evaluated. You don’t know what you’ve been missing…..
At The Hearing Center, we pride ourselves in quality patient care. You are always greeted with a smile and treated as if you are a member of our family. Our location is easily accessible and our audiologists’ schedules are set up to allow for extra time with patients to ensure all of your questions are answered. With an average 6-8 years of education and training, Audiologists are experts in the assessment, prevention and non-medical treatment of hearing disorders. The Hearing Center has five Masters and Doctorate level licensed and certified audiologists.
During your visit, the audiologist will start by looking in your ears with a magnified ear light to determine if your hearing problem is associated with a condition in the ear canal (such as wax buildup, ear infection, or foreign object). The next step is a hearing evaluation. This evaluation, performed by the audiologist, is a painless procedure that takes place in a soundproof booth or sound treated room, for accurate test results. Throughout the test, you are instructed to listen for very soft beeps at low and high pitches. In addition, the audiologist will test your ability to understand words. After the evaluation is complete we will explain the science of how hearing works, review your audiogram which is our graph of hearing, and discuss treatment options and recommendations.
It is time to reconnect with the world. Being diagnosed with a hearing loss can be shocking for some, especially when the treatment option is to wear hearing aids. This diagnosis is commonly perceived as “getting old” or the thought of wearing a hearing aid can be embarrassing. Isn’t it more embarrassing to ask others to repeat or inappropriately answer questions because you didn’t hear what was said? Hearing aids have come a long way in style, size, price and technology over the years. If you are a hearing aid candidate, the audiologist will take into consideration your cosmetic, financial, and technological needs to find a product that is perfect for you.
The benefits of wearing a hearing aid are endless. A research study of over 2,000 people found that individuals who wear hearing aids noted significant improvements in many areas in their life including more independence, better relationships at home, and increased attendance to social events. The best part of it all—most hearing aids are so tiny that no one even has to know you are wearing one. It is time to improve your quality of life. You deserve to take the step towards better hearing. The Hearing Center is here to help you. Call our office today at 330-493-HEAR (4327) to schedule your free consultation.
The Hearing Center