Are you finding that you’re turning up the TV all the time or have you noticed that you’re struggling to keep up with what’s going on in conversations or meetings? If you’re having to work harder to hear, you may be experiencing symptoms of hearing loss. The best thing to do if you think your hearing has deteriorated is to see an audiologist. Hearing loss often develops gradually, and usually, early intervention is hugely beneficial.

Signs of hearing loss

Many people are shocked to hear that they have hearing loss when they have a hearing test. This is because your hearing can deteriorate very slowly, and often, you don’t really notice minor changes. Something as simple as having to turn up the volume by a single bar on the TV or asking friends or family members to repeat themselves can be signs of hearing loss, but often, they go unnoticed. Another sign to look out for includes having to concentrate harder to hear. This usually applies to situations or environments where you have to contend with background noise, for example, trying to have a conversation in the office or attempting to place an order in a busy coffee shop.

When to see an audiologist

It can be very difficult to accept that you may have hearing loss, and sometimes, this can put people off seeking help. In some cases, hearing loss is temporary, for example, when you have an infection or a buildup of wax in the ear, but often, the signs listed above can indicate progressive hearing loss. If you’re having difficulty hearing or it’s been a long time since you had a hearing test, call and make an appointment with your audiologist. If you do have hearing loss, they can help to improve your hearing and prevent the situation from getting worse.

How does an audiologist diagnose hearing loss?

When you have a consultation with your audiologist, they will ask you a series of questions about your hearing to find out what kinds of problems you are experiencing and get any background information about your health that may be relevant. They will then talk to you about hearing tests they will run to see how well you can hear. These assessments provide your audiologist with more detailed information about your specific hearing abilities. The tests will measure how well you respond to different volumes, different types of sound and varied pitches.

Hearing tests can also help an audiologist determine possible causes of hearing loss, for example, damage to the vibrating components of the middle ear or sensory or nerve damage. Audiometer tests can also provide information about hearing ability in each ear. Some people have much better hearing in one ear than the other.

Once your audiologist has analyzed the results of your hearing tests, they will be able to make a diagnosis and suggest suitable treatment options, such as hearing aids.

If you’re finding it hard to hear, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your audiologist and make an appointment.