Have you ever attempted to disregard a toothache? They can be pretty rough. Sooner or later, you’re absolutely pleading to go see a dentist. And when your eyesight begins to lose focus it’s the same. When you have problems reading street signs, you’ll likely make a consultation with an ophthalmologist. But the issue is, when your hearing starts to go you may not show such urgency.
This would most likely be a mistake. Neglected hearing loss can be responsible for significant health problems (specifically mental problems). Obviously, you can only ignore your diminishing hearing if you’re actually aware of it. And there you have the second challenge.
You Could Have Hearing Loss if You Detect These Symptoms
We tend to take our hearing for granted. A high volume music event? No big deal. Blasting ear pods? That’s just how you prefer your podcasts. But each of those decisions, particularly in the long run, is going to have a substantial affect on your overall hearing.
It can, regrettably, be difficult to notice these impacts. Hearing loss can creep up on you gradually, with symptoms that advance so gradually as to be basically invisible. So you should take some time to educate yourself on some basic red flags (and to take care of them sooner than later):
- You keep turning up the volume on your car stereo, television, or your smartphone
- Speech of those around you (family, co-workers, friends) sounds muffled or distorted
- You experience sudden issues with short term memory
- When you listen to everyday speech, you have an especially tough time making out consonants
- You regularly have to ask people to repeat themselves
- When you’re in a crowded noisy situation you have a difficult time keeping up with conversations
- You can’t keep a set of earbuds because you keep blowing the speakers
- You feel an unexplained sense of fatigue or have excessive trouble falling asleep at night
It’s pretty well recognized what these red flags and signs indicate. At first, you will be somewhat oblivious to your symptoms, especially if they come on slowly, because your brain will immediately begin to compensate. That’s the reason why all of these warning signs should be taken seriously, which means you need to make an appointment to see your hearing specialist.
If You Ignore Your Hearing Loss, What Will Happen?
Some individuals are, certainly, obstinate. Or they simply don’t favor the concept of wearing a hearing aid. They have this fear that wearing a hearing aid is some kind of immediate marker for old age (as if constantly asking people to speak up is a sign of everlasting youth). But in actuality, most contemporary hearing aids are virtually unseen (and it’s helpful when you can hear and engage in conversations).
Still, if you neglect hearing loss it may lead to numerous problems:
- Your hearing might worsen: Without a hearing aid or enhanced hearing protection, you’ll keep turning the volume on your television higher. Or you won’t use earplugs when you go to rock concerts. And your hearing will continue declining as you continue to do harm to your ears.
- Your relationships could diminish: When you have a difficult time understanding what your family and friends are saying, something can change in the relationship: you begin having fewer interactions with them. You quit saying hi, you quit checking in, you distance yourself. And that can ruin some of those relationships, especially if the issue is hearing loss that you have kept secret (and not because you’re angry at them).
- Cognitive decline and depression could result: As your relationships fray and going out gets more challenging, you might start to detect symptoms of depression. You might also begin to experience some cognitive decline if your brain doesn’t receive the auditory stimulation that it’s used to, your neural physiology starts to experience specific changes. This can lead to long term cognitive problems if your hearing loss isn’t dealt with.
Hearing Loss Shouldn’t be Neglected
Down the road, clearly, bigger and more substantial problems can be caused by hearing loss. On the other hand, your quality of life can be substantially improved by acknowledging and dealing with your hearing loss. Your daily life is more full and your relationships get better when you start to hear better. And your overall health will be improved by consulting a hearing specialist or at least downloading a noise monitoring app.
Hearing loss is definitely a health condition you shouldn’t dismiss. A happier life begins when you find the right treatment. Take care of your hearing loss before it gets too severe to ignore.
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