Senior Citizen's Guide digital books
Senior Citizen's Guide to Baltimore

Is Hearing Loss Sneaking Up on You?

Age related hearing loss is a painless process, which occurs very slowly over a long period of time. Gradually, you might notice that you’re increasing the level of the television, straining to hear over the phone and asking people to repeat frequently. Ongoing hearing loss compromises our ability to communicate, alters our interactions with others and can ultimately threaten independent living. If you suspect hearing loss, a comprehensive hearing test is indicated. A hearing test is an easy non-invasive test, which can often be completed in less than 20 minutes. Baseline hearing testing is recommended for all adults over the age of 60 years. Sometimes a consultation with an ENT physician is indicated to remove any excessive ear wax prior to hearing testing and to investigate any underlying medical issues which may be provoking or exacerbating the hearing loss.

The following are common indicators of hearing loss:

The good news is there is a lot of help for age related hearing loss and there is no need to continue to compromise your quality of life. Sometimes some simple communication strategies can make a big difference. For instance, strategic seating in a crowded restaurant can help to minimize distracting background noise. Asking people to slow the rate of speech, rather than shouting is often helpful. Hearing aids are often recommended for people who suffer from age related hearing loss and although we cannot “cure” hearing loss with hearing aids we are able to significantly improve intelligibility with amplification. Hearing aids come with at least a 30-day trial period so there is time to experiment and adapt to the new sound quality. Patients who are highly motivated to improve their hearing sensitivity with amplification are often extremely successful.

Once a patient has decided to proceed with hearing aids, decisions are made regarding the style of aid(s) and technology options. When selecting hearing aids, it is a good idea to analyze your life style and communication needs. Other factors to consider are your degree of hearing loss, cosmetic preferences, medical issues and finances. Once you take the plunge into amplification it is critical to commit to them by wearing them on a very regular schedule, with a goal of wearing them from the time you wake up in the morning to the time you go to bed at night. Eventually the world sounds more “normal” with the aids in than without them.

Remember hearing loss doesn’t have to limit you or impair your lifestyle. Diagnostic testing is quick and painless and there are solid options for correction. Hearing health care should be a priority for all older adults.

Home    Featured Programs    Choose Local Area     Request Information
A JR Media Publication • www.jrmediallc.comSite Index