Should I Get a Hearing Test?

Woman with short curly hair reading about hearing tests on her phone contemplating scheduling and exam

When is it time to have your hearing checked? You need a hearing test if you have any of these four warning signs.

I guess my TV is frequently turned up to the point where my kids recently complained. Do you know what I said to them? I said, “What”? It was humorous. Because it was a joke. But, in some ways, it was anything but funny. The TV has been getting progressively louder. And I started to ask myself: should I get a hearing test?

There aren’t really that many excuses not to schedule yourself for a hearing test. They aren’t invasive, there’s no radiation, you don’t have to worry about discomfort. You’ve probably just been putting it on the back-burner.

Considering how much neglected hearing loss can affect your health, you really should be more diligent about making sure your hearing loss hasn’t worsened.

Hearing evaluations are essential for a wide variety of reasons. Even slight hearing loss can have an impact on your health and it’s virtually impossible to identify early hearing loss without a hearing assessment.

So how can you recognize if you should make an appointment? Here are some indications that it’s time.

You should have your hearing tested if you notice these signs

It’s time to get a professional hearing assessment if you’ve been experiencing symptoms of hearing loss recently. Clearly, it’s a powerful indication of hearing loss if you’re having a difficult time hearing.

But that’s not the only indicator, and there are some signs of hearing loss that are much less obvious:

  • It seems like people are mumbling when they talk: Often, it’s clarity not volume you need to be concerned about. One of the first symptoms of hearing loss is trouble making out conversations. If you detect this happening more and more, you may want to make an appointment for a hearing exam.
  • Chronic ringing in your ears: A typical sign of damaged hearing is a ringing in the ears, also called tinnitus. If you’re experiencing some ringing that won’t stop, it might or might not be a symptom of hearing loss. But if the ringing won’t stop, you should definitely come see us for a hearing evaluation.
  • You always miss alerts for text messages: Your cellphone (or mobile device, as they’re called now) is made to be loud. So if you’re frequently missing calls or text messages, it may be because you can’t hear them. And perhaps, when you think about it, you’re missing out on more everyday sounds.
  • It’s tough to hear in noisy locations: Have you ever had a difficult time keeping up with conversations because of ambient noise in a crowded room? That may actually be an indication of hearing loss. Being able to isolate sounds is one indication of healthy hearing; this ability tends to diminish as hearing loss advances.

Here are some other situations that indicate you should schedule a hearing evaluation:

  • You experience vertigo
  • Your ear hasn’t cleared after an ear infection
  • You frequently use certain medications that are recognized to have an impact on your hearing.
  • Your ears aren’t removing earwax completely
  • You can’t easily identify where specific sounds are originating

This checklist, obviously, is not complete. For instance, if your TV’s volume is maxed and you still can’t hear it. But any one of these symptoms is worth looking into.

Regular checkups

But how should you cope with it when you’re not sure if you have any symptoms of hearing loss. So how frequently should you have your hearing screened? There’s a guideline for everything, right, so there’s got to be a guideline for this. There are, actually, some recommendations.

  • Get a primary test done sometime after you’re 21. Then your mature hearing will have a baseline.
  • If your hearing is normal, have hearing examinations or tests every three years or so. But be sure you note these appointments in your calendar or medical records because it’s easy to forget over these long periods of time.
  • If you notice signs of hearing loss, you will want to get it checked immediately, and then annually after that.

It will be easier to identify any hearing loss before any warning signs become obvious with regular screenings. The earlier you obtain treatment, the better you’ll be able to preserve your hearing into the future. Which means, you should probably turn down your TV and make an appointment for a hearing assessment.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.