It’s not necessary to feel like your alone if you haven’t had a hearing exam since you were a kid. It’s not normally part of a routine adult physical and sadly, we tend to deal with hearing reactively rather than proactively. In fact, even when they realize they have hearing loss, most people disregard it for up to seven years which can significantly impact your health. As a matter of fact, in the long run, it’s been proven that your overall health expense will increase if you have untreated hearing loss.
The good news, hearing tests are simple, pain-free, and give a wide range of facts for our experts to help you, both for diagnosing hearing concerns and evaluating whether interventions like hearing aids are working. A full audiometry exam is more involved than what you may remember from childhood and you won’t get a sticker or a lollipop when it’s finished but you’ll get a much clearer understanding of your hearing.
It’s crucial that you regularly have your hearing checked even though you may not typically give your hearing as much consideration as your teeth or eyes. It can be a considerable time before you detect that there is an issue with your hearing. Because hearing loss usually happens slowly over time it’s not easy to detect it at first, but the sooner you do, the more likely you will be able to successfully deal with it.
How do You Know When to Get Examined?
All infants should be tested for hearing loss, and usually, the hospital handles that before they are sent home. Teenagers should be screened during regular exams with their doctors and children should have formal hearing tests at the ages of 4, 5, 6, 8 and 10 years old according to The American Academy of Pediatrics.
If you are in between the ages of 18 and 45, it is suggested that you get your hearing checked every five years and then more frequently as you get older. You should get checked every three years if you are between 46 and 60 years old and then every two years after you turn 60. But you may need to get checked more often. The regularity with which you need to get examined will ultimately depend on your specific circumstances. You should get your hearing examined right away if you notice it isn’t as good as it once was. Untreated loss of hearing has been linked to mental decline, depression and increased risk of falling and other health concerns. It can also affect your relationships and your ability to do work effectively.
And you should have a hearing test, in some circumstances, as soon as possible if you have hearing loss that is getting quickly worse. An immediate hearing test is advisable if:
- Asking people to repeat themselves is something you have to do constantly
- Your ear was infected, or there was a buildup of earwax
- It is difficult to pinpoint where sounds are coming from
- You are experiencing a constant ringing in your ears
- You are unable to hear conversations, particularly when in crowded areas
- You are experiencing vertigo
Whether you are at risk of hearing loss is another factor. For example, if loss of hearing runs in your family or you are subjected to loud noises regularly you should have your hearing checked more frequently.
There are also over 200 ototoxic medications. From Aspirin to some antibiotics, these drugs can be very bad for your hearing. Check with your doctor to make sure any medicines you are taking aren’t impacting your hearing. If you need to take a medication that you know is ototoxic, think about getting more frequent hearing testing so you can deal with any hearing loss immediately.
Also, take into consideration how your habits might be affecting your hearing loss. Are you using earbuds regularly? Hearing loss has substantially increased in younger people, and many experts think that this is because of the use of headphones and earbuds. Your hearing can also be substantially harmed by machinery, shows, or loud concerts. Schedule your hearing test today if it’s time for you to get your hearing tested.