“What did you say? Excuse me, can you repeat that?”
If you are using these questions too often, you may have the beginnings of a hearing problem. The amount of exertion and concentration it can take to follow conversations in social settings can be downright exhausting.
It’s nothing to be embarrassed about, but it is something you can fix. Hearing loss is not uncommon–and though it’s often associated with aging, young people can face hearing loss early on in life. According to the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), about 20% of all Americans report experiencing hearing loss. That means a total of 48 million individuals struggle to hear each and every day. And it only grows worse with age: HLAA reports that approximately 40% of people over age 50 have hearing loss, and 1 out of 3 people experiences hearing loss once they reach age 65.
But the days of hearing loss are coming to an end. How? Advancements in technology are bringing newer, better, faster, and more affordable hearing devices to the public. No longer must you struggle to improve your hearing with uncomfortable and obvious hearing aids.
Why More People Are Facing the Truth
The truth is, no one wants to accept hearing loss, especially at a young age. Yet more often than not, it is an easily avoidable problem and, in recent years, most people put off getting their hearing checked for as long as possible. Unfortunately, the longer you wait to deal with slowly deteriorating hearing, the bigger the problem will become.
Meanwhile, it’s also frustrating to find yourself misunderstanding others or missing out on co because you can’t hear properly. Hearing loss can cause a lot of conflict, but these days, it can be resolved with a little technological intervention.
In 2017, there are multiple options for hearing aids that are actually fashionable and sometimes even invisible!
Different types of hearing loss
Regular check-ups are always a good idea, but when it comes to hearing loss, the aim is to determine the cause of your hearing loss, to what extent it affects you, and which frequencies you are missing out on. There are different types of hearing loss, depending on which part of the ear and its nerves are affected.
The most common causes are aging and prolonged exposure to background noise, such as years spent working in a factory. The tiny little hairs inside the ear are gradually damaged or stop functioning, and as a result they cannot pick up as many sound waves. Other causes of hearing loss include malformation, problems with or damage to the ear canal, eardrum, middle ear, nerve-related hearing loss, or a combination of these factors. If there is no structural problem, your check-up may also include checking for ear infections, fluid or wax build-up, benign tumors, or foreign objects.
Technology Can Bring Back the Sounds You Miss
Now when you wear a hearing aid, you’ll look more like a cool secret agent than like your grandparents, thanks to improved designs. Hearing aids are now almost invisible, designed to fit discreetly in your ear while still being easily adjustable. Many of them can now connect to apps on your smartphone and even have waterproof features, so they don’t interrupt your daily life.
Don’t let yourself become isolated from the world around you, from meaningful and fun conversations with family and friends. Hearing loss is one of the fastest tracks to sadness and depression. Go get your hearing tested and check out your options. You may well be able to get a hearing aid at a much more affordable price than you expected. Shop around and turn up the music, you’re not going to miss out!