SIGNS AND CONSEQUENCES OF HEARING LOSS

Hearing loss can happen to anyone. It does not discriminate because of age, gender, demographic background or ethnicity. In addition to the noticeable signs of hearing loss, including asking for repetition or saying “What?” there are some warning signs that are not as obvious.  One of the most challenging aspects of hearing loss is the gradual progression in which it appears for some patients. Research shows it takes more than seven years from the time a patient notices they have to....

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AUDIOLOGIST VS. HEARING INSTRUMENT SPECIALISTS

With the addition of hearing aids to chain stores, there are more places than ever to purchase such devices. Making it even more complicated, there are also different levels of hearing health care professionals capable of working with individuals who have hearing loss, including audiologists and hearing instrument specialists. Understanding the key differences between these professionals will allow patients to make more educated decisions regarding their hearing health.

….FULL ARTICLE

HEARING AIDS VS. OVER-THE-COUNTER DEVICES

One of the most common questions I get after recommending hearing aid technology to a patient is: Why are they so expensive? This question not only stems from pricing advertised by local hearing healthcare providers, but also over-the-counter (OTC) devices that can be purchased for a fraction of the cost.

….FULL ARTICLE

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SIGNS AND CONSEQUENCES OF HEARING LOSS

Please take a moment to answer the questions below. If you answer “Yes” to three or more of them, a hearing evaluation is highly recommended.


  1. Do you have difficulty hearing family or friends when you’re at a restaurant?
  2. Do you feel embarrassed when meeting new people because of a hearing issue?
  3. Do you have difficulty hearing someone when they speak to you in a whisper?
  4. Do you feel frustrated when talking to family members because of a hearing issue?
  5. Do you feel handicapped by a hearing problem?
  6. Do you feel you attend events less often because of a hearing issue?
  7. Do you have difficulty hearing family or friends when visiting with them?
  8. Do you have difficulty listening to the television or radio?
  9. Do you feel your hearing negatively impacts your personal or social life?
  10. Do you have arguments with family because of hearing issues?

Did you know:


Hearing loss can happen to anyone. It does not discriminate because of age, gender, demographic background or ethnicity. In addition to the noticeable signs of hearing loss, including asking for repetition or saying “What?” there are some warning signs that are not as obvious.


One of the most challenging aspects of hearing loss is the gradual pro- gression in which it appears for some patients. Research shows it takes more than seven years from the time a patient notices they have hearing loss until they decide to

seek treatment. Because of this gradual nature, hearing loss is able to stay hidden for a longer time compared to other health issues.


There are several warning signs for hearing loss. They have been divided into social, emotional and medical signs. These categories are not limited to the examples listed below.


Social Signs


Emotional Signs


Medical Signs


These signs are so important because if left untreated, hearing loss can have numerous negative consequences, the most important being potential health impacts. These include, but are not limited to, headaches, muscle tension and increased stress and blood-pressure levels.


Additionally, negative emotions often plague adults with hearing loss. These include feeling inadequate, awkward, embarrassed, different or abnormal. The desire to hide hearing aids often arises from feelings of shame. Hearing aids are a visible reminder that someone is “different.” However, the stress of living with hearing loss can lead to distrust, sadness, depression, anger, isolation, poor self-image and feeling inadequate or incompetent.


Too often guilt can be thrown into the emotional mix of hearing loss. Many individuals take on the responsibility of their hearing loss and blame themselves for the misunderstandings hearing loss causes, even becoming over-apologetic when asking others to repeat themselves.


While individuals may know they have hearing loss and are aware of the negative impacts hearing loss can have on their lives, many are unwilling to pursue hearing aids because they might make them look “old.” Here is something to consider: Hearing loss is more noticeable, when left untreated, than hearing aids.


If you or someone you know has hearing loss and you are ready to take the next step, contact a Doctor of Audiology. An audiologist will take the time to complete a full diagnostic evaluation and make appropriate recommendations for such treatment. It’s never too soon to hear the world around you better.  

DR TIFFANY BREWER

Dr. Tiffany Brewer completed her Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) at the University of Louisville’s School of Medicine and her undergraduate degree in Speech Pathology and Audiology at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She is licensed by the state of Kentucky as an Audiologist and Hearing Instrument Specialist.

more articles by Dr Tiffany Brewer