You want to be courteous when you are talking with friends. At work, you want to look involved, even enthralled with what your manager/colleagues/clients are talking about. You frequently find yourself needing family to repeat themselves because it was easier to tune out parts of the discussion that you weren’t able to hear very well.
You need to lean in a little closer when you’re on conference calls. You look closely at body language and facial clues and listen for verbal inflections. You attempt to read people’s lips. And if all else fails – you fake it.
Don’t fool yourself. You’re struggling to keep up because you missed most of what was said. Life at home and projects at work have become unnecessarily overwhelming and you are feeling frustrated and cut off due to years of progressive hearing loss.
Some research shows that situational factors such as environmental acoustics, background noise, competing signals, and situational awareness have a major influence on the way we hear. But for people who suffer from hearing loss, these factors are made even more difficult.
Some hearing loss behaviors to watch out for
Here are a few habits to help you figure out whether you are, in truth, convincing yourself that your hearing impairment isn’t affecting your social and professional interactions, or whether it’s just the acoustics in the environment:
- Finding it harder to hear phone conversations
- Asking people to repeat themselves over and over again
- Having a hard time hearing what others behind you are saying
- Thinking people aren’t talking clearly when all you can hear is mumbling
- Leaning in during conversations and unconsciously cupping your ear with your hand
- Asking others what you missed after pretending you heard what they were saying
Hearing loss most likely didn’t take place overnight even though it may feel as if it did. Most people wait 7 years on average before acknowledging the issue and seeking help.
This means that if your hearing loss is problematic now, it has most likely been going unaddressed and untreated for some time. Hearing loss is no joke so stop fooling yourself and make an appointment now.