Do you find yourself asking people to speak up or to repeat themselves? Have others complained that you turn the TV or radio up too loud? Do you experience ringing, buzzing, or other noises in your ears or head? Have you had any significant noise exposure at work, during recreation or in military service? Do you find it difficult to follow a conversation in a noisy restaurant or crowded room? If you answered, “yes” to any of these questions, chances are that you are among the more than 32 million Americans who have a hearing loss. If you answered, “yes” to more than one of these questions, it strongly suggests that a hearing evaluation by a licensed audiologist is needed.
An audiologist is a hearing care professional who identifies and manages hearing disorders. For some, the hearing loss requires medical treatment. In this case, audiologists work alongside physicians to determine the necessary medical intervention. If the hearing loss is not medically treatable, the next best step is to consider hearing aids. The most common type of hearing loss that cannot be treated by a medical doctor is age-related hearing loss.
The accumulation of birthdays can cause all sorts of issues: hair loss, a thickening around the middle and age-related hearing loss (presbycusis), which begins around age thirty. The most common type of hearing loss as we age is called sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL), which affects around 40% of those 65 years of age and older with the prevalence increasing with each decade. A sensorineural hearing loss, often called “nerve deafness”, is a type of hearing loss that cannot be treated medically or surgically. Therefore, audiologists recommend rehabilitation primarily in the form of hearing aids in order to “treat” such a loss.
Hearing aids are just that; they are a device to aid in hearing. They will not restore hearing back to how it was when you were twenty. But, most people with a hearing loss benefit significantly from hearing aids that are properly selected and fitted for their individual needs. Working alongside an audiologist, you will find that a hearing aid brings back some of the enjoyment of life. No longer will you be left out of the conversation at the dinner table. You might even start to enjoy the activities you’ve been avoiding because you know you can’t hear. Isn’t it time to take that first step? Don’t let hearing loss keep you from the life you enjoy. Call our office today and make an appointment for a hearing evaluation today. You’re worth it!