If you haven’t had your hearing examined since your grade school days, you’re not by yourself. Regrettably, we have a tendency to treat hearing loss reactively instead of proactively, and a normal adult physical normally doesn’t include a hearing test. Most people neglect hearing loss, even when they are cognizant of it, for up to seven years which can seriously affect your health. In fact, over time, it’s been proven that your general health cost will go up if you have untreated hearing loss.
The good news, hearing tests are easy, painless, and give a wide range of information for our experts to assist you, both for diagnosing hearing problems and evaluating whether interventions such as hearing aids are working. When you were a child, you might recall the audiometry test from school, but a full hearing test will give you a clearer understanding of your hearing without a sticker or a lollipop.
It’s important that you routinely have your hearing checked even though you may not typically give your hearing as much attention as your teeth or eyes. You might not notice an issue with your hearing for some time. Hearing loss usually occurs gradually, and the sooner you detect a problem with your hearing, the sooner you might be able to deal with it.
When Should You Be Tested?
All newborns should be screened for hearing loss, and typically, the hospital does that before they are released. The American Academy of Pediatrics advises that children undergo formal hearing exams when they are 4, 5, 6, 8 and 10 years old and that teenagers should have hearing tests during wellness visits with their physicians.
If you are in between the ages of 18 and 45, it is suggested that you get your hearing examined every five years and then more frequently as you age. You should get checked every three years if you are 46 to 60 years old and then every two years after you turn 60. But don’t allow that to stop you. The regularity with which you need to get examined will ultimately depend on your individual situation. If you notice your hearing isn’t as good as it once was, you should have it tested immediately. Neglected hearing loss has been associated with mental decline, depression and a greater risk of falling and other health issues. It can also impact your relationships and your ability to work effectively.
There are also scenarios in which you should have a hearing exam as soon as you can to address hearing loss that could get worse. An immediate hearing test is advisable if:
- There is earwax buildup or you had an ear infection
- You are experiencing vertigo
- Pinpointing where sounds are coming from is difficult
- Your ears have constant ringing in them
- You are unable to hear conversations, particularly when in crowded areas
- You find yourself having to constantly ask people to repeat themselves
Whether you are at risk of hearing loss is another consideration. For example, if hearing loss runs in your family or you are subjected to loud noises on a regular basis you should get your hearing examined more often.
There are also more than 200 ototoxic medicines. From Aspirin to some antibiotics, these drugs can be very bad for your hearing. In order to be sure none of your medications are impacting your ears, consult your doctor. If you need to take a medication that you know is ototoxic, think about getting more frequent hearing testing so you can address any hearing loss right away.
Also, think about how your habits might be impacting your hearing loss. Frequently using your earbuds? Hearing loss has substantially increased in younger people, and many experts think that this is because of the use of headphones and earbuds. shows, loud concerts, and machinery can also do appreciable damage to your hearing. If you think that it’s time for you to have your hearing checked, schedule an appointment today.