Prevention and Early Detection of Hearing Loss are Important
Don’t wait until you show signs of hearing loss. Have your hearing examined by your doctor during your regular checkup. A basic hearing evaluation usually includes a quick look in the ear with a special light for looking into the ear canal and other checks to assess the sounds you can hear.
Your doctor may refer you to a hearing specialist (audiologist) or other healthcare provider who is qualified to test hearing if you
- Have a history of exposure to loud noise,
- Feel your hearing has changed, or
- Have family or friends that say you have difficulty hearing and communicating with them (those around us can be the first to notice our hearing problems).
The audiologist may have you listen to different sounds through headphones to determine the softest sounds you can hear, or have you repeat lists of words or complete other special tests.
9 Signs of Hearing Loss
If you have any of these signs or symptoms, you may have hearing loss caused by noise:
- Speech and other sounds seem muffled
- Difficulty hearing high-pitched sounds (e.g., birds, doorbell, telephone, alarm clock)
- Difficulty understanding conversations when you are in a noisy place, such as a restaurant
- Difficulty understanding speech over the phone
- Trouble distinguishing speech consonants (e.g., difficulty distinguishing the difference between s and f, between p and t, or between sh and th in speech)
- Asking others to speak more slowly and clearly
- Asking someone to speak more loudly or repeat what they said
- Turning up the volume of the television or radio
- Ringing in the ears
For more information about hearing loss and how to prevent it, visit the CDC’s website.