Surprisingly, it’s been more than 10 years since most people have had a hearing assessment.
Harper is one of them. She reports to her doctor for her annual medical exam and gets her teeth cleaned every six months. She even replaces her timing belt every 6000 miles. But her hearing test typically gets ignored.
There are lots of reasons to get hearing exams, the most prominent of which is that it’s normally difficult for you to discover the earliest indications of hearing loss without one. Harper’s ears and hearing will remain as healthy as possible if she knows how often to get her hearing tested.
So, just how often should you have a hearing assessment?
If the last time Harper took a hearing exam was over ten years ago, that’s alarming. Or we may think it’s completely normal. Our reaction will differ depending on how old she is. That’s because we have different recommendations based on age.
- If you are over fifty years of age: Once a year is the suggested schedule for hearing tests in people over 50 years old. As you age, the noise damage you’ve incurred over a lifetime can begin to speed up, which means hearing loss is more likely to start affecting your life. Plus, there might be other health issues that can affect your hearing.
- If you are less than fifty years old: Once every 3 to 10 years is suggested for hearing tests. There’s no harm in having your ears tested more frequently, of course! But once every decade is the bare minimum. If you’ve been subjecting yourself to loud concert noise or work in an industry with high decibel levels, you should err on the side of caution and get tested more frequently. After all, it’s painless, simple, and there’s really no practical reason not to do it.
Signs you need to get your hearing checked
Of course, your annual (or semi-annual) hearing assessment isn’t the only good time to schedule an appointment with us. Perhaps you begin to notice some symptoms of hearing loss. And in those situations, it’s important to get in touch with us and schedule a hearing assessment.
Some of the clues that should motivate you to get a hearing test include:
- Sudden hearing loss in one ear.
- Having a hard time hearing consonants (in general, consonants are spoken in a higher wavelength than vowels, and it’s those high-frequency sounds that are often the first to go as hearing loss takes hold.)
- Sounds become muffled; it starts to sound as though you always have water inside of your ears.
- You’re having a hard time hearing conversations when you’re in a loud setting.
- Asking people to slow down or repeat what they said during a conversation.
- Having a very tough time hearing people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
- The volume on your stereo or television is getting louder and louder.
It’s a strong hint that it’s time to get a hearing test when the above warning signs start to add up. The sooner you get your hearing checked, the sooner you’ll know what’s going on with your ears.
What are the advantages of hearing testing?
Harper could be late getting her hearing test for several reasons.
Perhaps she hasn’t thought about it.
Maybe she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But getting the recommended hearing tests has tangible benefits.
We can establish a baseline for your hearing, which will help identify any future deviations, even if it’s presently healthy. You’ll be in a better position to protect your hearing if you detect any early hearing loss before it becomes noticeable.
Discovering hearing issues before they create permanent hearing loss is the exact reason somebody like Harper should get tested regularly. Detecting your hearing loss early by having your hearing checked when you should will help you keep your ears healthier, longer. If you let your hearing go, it can have an affect on your general health.