It’s difficult to comprehend but most people have gone more than ten years without having a hearing exam.
One of those people is Harper. She schedules a checkup and cleaning with her dentist every six months and she shows up dutifully for her annual medical exam. She even knows to get her timing belt changed every 6000 miles! But her hearing exam normally gets ignored.
Hearing assessments are essential for a variety of reasons, the most prominent of which is that it’s normally difficult for you to discover the earliest symptoms of hearing loss without one. Knowing how often she should get their hearing tested will help Harper keep her ears (and hearing) as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
So you should have your hearing tested how often?
If the last time Harper got a hearing exam was over a decade ago, that’s disconcerting. Or perhaps it isn’t. Our reaction will vary depending on how old she is. That’s because we have different suggestions based on age.
- If you are over fifty years of age: The general recommendation is that anyone above the age of fifty should schedule yearly hearing exams As you get older, the noise damage you’ve sustained over a lifetime can begin to speed up, which means hearing loss is more likely to start affecting your life. Plus, there could be other health concerns that can affect your hearing.
- If you are less than fifty years old: It’s usually recommended that you get a hearing test once every three to ten years or so. There’s no harm in getting your ears tested more frequently, of course! But the bare minimum is once every ten years. And you should play it safe and get tested more often if you work in an occupation that tends to be loud or if you go to a lot of concerts. It’s quick, easy, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
Signs you need to get your hearing checked
Obviously, there are other times, besides the annual exam, that you may want to come in and see us. Perhaps you start to notice some symptoms of hearing loss. And in those cases, it’s important to get in touch with us and schedule a hearing assessment.
Some of the clues that should prompt you to get a hearing exam include:
- Having a very hard time understanding people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
- You’re having a hard time hearing sounds in higher frequencies such as consonants.
- Sounds become muffled; it begins to sound as though you always have water in your ears.
- The volume on your stereo or television is getting louder and louder.
- You suddenly can’t hear out of one ear.
- You need people to speak louder or repeat themselves.
- You’re having a difficult time making out conversations when you’re in a noisy setting.
It’s a solid hint that it’s time to get a hearing test when the above warning signs start to add up. You’ll know what’s happening with your ears as soon as you come in for an evaluation.
How will a hearing test be beneficial?
Harper may be late getting her hearing test for a number of reasons.
It may have slipped her mind.
It’s possible that she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But there are tangible advantages to getting your hearing examined per recommendations.
Even if you believe your hearing is totally healthy, a hearing exam will help set a baseline reading, which makes deviations in the future easier to identify. You’ll be in a better position to safeguard your hearing if you detect any early hearing loss before it becomes obvious.
The point of regular hearing tests is that somebody like Harper will be able to identify issues before her hearing is permanently damaged. Detecting your hearing loss early by having your hearing checked when you should will help you keep your hearing healthier, longer. Consider the effects of hearing loss on your general health, it’s that important.