It’s difficult to believe but most people have gone more than ten years without getting a hearing test.
Harper is one of them. She reports to her doctor for her annual medical exam and gets her teeth cleaned every six months. She even replaces her timing belt every 6000 miles. But her hearing exam usually gets neglected.
There are a number of reasons to get hearing exams, early detection of hearing loss being one of the most important. Determining how frequently she should get a hearing test will help Harper keep her ears (and hearing) as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
So, just how often should you get a hearing exam?
It’s disconcerting to think that Harper hasn’t taken a hearing exam in 10 years. Or maybe it isn’t. Our reaction will vary depending on how old she is. Depending on age, recommendations will differ.
- If you are over fifty years of age: Once annually is the recommended schedule for hearing exams in people over 50 years old. As you age, 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. Also, as we get older we’re more likely to have other health problems that can have an affect on hearing.
- For people under 50: It’s generally recommended that you get a hearing exam once every three to ten years or so. Obviously, it’s fine to get a hearing test more frequently. But once every decade is the bare minimum. If you’ve been exposing yourself to loud concert noise or work in an industry with high decibel levels, you should err on the side of caution and get tested more often. After all, it’s painless, easy, and there’s really no good reason not to do it.
You need to have your hearing assessed if you experience any of these signs.
Obviously, there are other times, besides the yearly exam, that you might want to come in for a consultation. Maybe you begin to experience some signs of hearing loss. And when they do you should make an appointment with us for a hearing exam.
A few of the clues that should prompt you to have a hearing exam include:
- Having a difficult time hearing consonants (in general, consonants are spoken in a higher wavelength than vowels, and it’s those high-frequency sounds that are often the first to go as hearing loss takes hold.)
- The volume on your stereo or TV is getting louder and louder.
- Difficulty hearing conversations in loud environments.
- Sounds become muffled; it begins to sound as though you always have water in your ears.
- Rapid hearing loss in one ear.
- You need people to talk louder or repeat what they said.
- Having a really difficult time hearing people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
When the previously mentioned warning signs begin to add up, it’s a good indication that the perfect time to get a hearing test is right now. The sooner you get your hearing checked, the sooner you’ll know what’s happening with your ears.
What are the advantages of hearing testing?
Harper could be late having her hearing checked for several reasons.
It might have slipped her mind.
Maybe she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But getting the suggested hearing tests has tangible benefits.
We can establish a baseline for your hearing, which will help identify any future deviations, even if it’s currently healthy. You’ll be in a better position to protect your hearing if you detect any early hearing loss before it becomes noticeable.
Detecting hearing issues before they cause permanent hearing loss is the exact reason somebody like Harper should get tested regularly. Your ears will remain healthy longer by having these regular screenings. If you allow your hearing to go, it can have an affect on your overall health.