It’s difficult to believe but most people have gone more than ten years without having a hearing exam.
Harper is one of them. She reports to her doctor for her annual medical exam and has her teeth cleaned every six months. She even knows to get her timing belt replaced every 6000 miles! But her hearing test normally gets neglected.
Hearing assessments are essential for a wide variety of reasons, early detection of hearing loss being one of the most essential. Harper’s ears and hearing will remain as healthy as possible if she determines how often to get her hearing checked.
So, just how often should you get a hearing exam?
If the last time Harper took a hearing exam was over a decade ago, that’s alarming. Or we might think it’s completely normal. Her age will largely determine our reaction. That’s because we have different suggestions based on age.
- For people over 50: Once annually is the suggested schedule for hearing assessments in people over 50 years old. Hearing loss is more likely to have an affect on your life as you get older because the noise damage that has accumulated over a lifetime will speed up that impairment. Also, as we get older we’re more likely to have other health conditions that can have an affect on hearing.
- For people under 50: It’s generally recommended that you take a hearing test about once every three to ten years. Of course, it’s ok to get a hearing test more frequently. But the bare minimum is once every ten years. 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 frequently. It’s quick, easy, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
You should have your hearing checked if you notice any of these signs.
Obviously, there are other times, besides the yearly exam, that you might want to come in and see us. Maybe you begin to experience some signs of hearing loss. And in those situations, it’s important to contact us and schedule a hearing assessment.
Here are some clues that you need a hearing test:
- Trouble hearing conversations in noisy environments.
- Having a really hard time understanding people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
- The volume on your stereo or television is getting louder and louder.
- You need people to speak louder or repeat themselves.
- Having a hard 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.)
- Sounds become muffled; it begins to sound as if you always have water inside of your ears.
- You abruptly can’t hear out of one ear.
When the previously mentioned warning signs begin to add up, it’s a good indication that the perfect time to get a hearing exam is right now. The sooner you get your hearing checked, the sooner you’ll know what’s happening with your ears.
How will a hearing test help?
There are lots of reasons why Harper may be late in having her hearing checked.
It might have slipped her mind.
Maybe she’s purposely avoiding thinking about it. But getting the suggested hearing tests has concrete benefits.
We can establish a baseline for your hearing, which will help determine any future deviations, even if it’s presently healthy. If you can catch your hearing loss before it becomes obvious, you can better protect it.
The point of regular hearing tests is that somebody like Harper will be able to identify problems before her hearing is permanently diminished. Your ears will remain healthy longer by having these regular screenings. Think about the effects of hearing loss on your overall health, it’s that important.