Every person needs to have their hearing checked regularly. Even young adults benefit from undergoing this testing. When caught early, most types of hearing loss are treatable. That’s why scheduling a hearing test is so crucial. What are some key reasons why it’s wise to get your hearing tested periodically?
Catch Hearing Loss Early
The earlier hearing loss is detected, the better. Over time, untreated hearing loss can get worse. If it’s caught early on, there are many excellent treatment options available. When you schedule a hearing test, you increase the chances of identifying any problems in their beginning stages. Early intervention for hearing loss can minimize its impacts and prevent it from significantly affecting your communication, relationships, work performance, and more.
Establish a Baseline
Getting a baseline hearing test gives you a point of comparison for future exams. When you have this baseline data, it becomes much easier for audiologists to recognize changes in your hearing abilities over time. Any significant shifts from your norm could indicate that it’s time to address hearing loss. Regular hearing tests every couple of years provide useful benchmarks against which hearing health can be measured.
Access Treatment Sooner
Once hearing loss is detected through testing, treatment can begin right away. The most common treatments for hearing impairment are hearing aids and cochlear implants. Hearing aids amplify sounds to make them louder and clearer. A cochlear implant sends electrical signals to the auditory nerve. When doing so, it skips over damaged parts of the ear. This process allows for better hearing. The sooner these treatments are implemented after diagnosis, the more effective they tend to be. Putting off testing delays access to solutions that can improve hearing and quality of life.
Monitor Age-Related Hearing Loss
As you get older, hearing loss becomes increasingly common. About 25% of people ages 65 to 74 have disabling hearing loss. That figure jumps to 50% by age 75. Older adults frequently experience age-related hearing loss caused by changes in the inner ear. Regular hearing exams can track this gradual decline in hearing that occurs with aging, so appropriate accommodations and listening strategies can be put in place. Scheduling hearing tests enables you to proactively address age-related hearing changes.
Check for Other Health Issues
Hearing tests don’t just identify hearing loss. They also detect other medical problems. Issues with the ears, auditory nerve, or brain can contribute to hearing changes. Test results that don’t match the type of hearing loss expected with simple age-related changes may indicate additional health conditions requiring further evaluation. Hearing examinations can sometimes reveal underlying problems like benign tumors, ear infections, or buildup of fluids.
Obtain Accurate Diagnoses
There are different types of hearing loss with different causes. Sensorineural hearing loss stemming from inner ear damage tends to be permanent. Conductive hearing loss caused by obstructions in the ear canal may be reversible. Only comprehensive hearing examinations performed by audiologists can accurately diagnose the nature and origins of hearing impairment. With precise diagnoses, appropriate and effective treatment plans can be made. Accurate testing leads to solutions tailored to your specific hearing needs.
Communicate Needs to Loved Ones
When loved ones understand your hearing loss challenges, they can adjust their communication to help you. However, they need to learn exactly what you can and cannot hear well to make those accommodations. Getting a hearing test provides you with documentation of your hearing abilities that you can share with family and friends. This gives them insight into how best to make their voices heard when speaking with you.
Find the Right Hearing Aids
Hearing aids come in many styles, shapes, sizes, and capabilities. To find hearing aids suited to your personal needs and preferences, your audiologist will need detailed information from thorough hearing exams. Testing reveals the exact type and degree of hearing loss in different sound frequencies. This enables the programming of hearing aids with appropriate amplification and features for your unique hearing profile. Comprehensive testing is required to find the optimal hearing aids for you. Looking for hearing aids in Melbourne, FL? Contact or visit Harbor City Hearing Solutions today!
Monitor Noise Exposure
Excessive noise exposure leads to noise-induced hearing loss over time. Hearing tests can detect early indications of changes from loud noise. This gives you a chance to take preventative measures, like avoiding noisy environments, before permanent damage occurs. For those regularly around loud machinery or recreational noise like concerts, getting routine hearing checks aids in monitoring noise impacts on hearing.
Check Hearing Aid Function
For those who already wear hearing aids, scheduled hearing exams allow audiologists to check that the devices are working properly. Testing will identify any issues with hearing aid fit, settings, or functionality. Hearing aid maintenance checks at regular hearing appointments catch malfunctions early before they seriously disrupt hearing aid usage. Exams also provide opportunities to adjust hearing aid settings over time for maximum benefit.
Monitor Middle Ear Infections
Fluid buildup and infections of the middle ear can cause temporary conductive hearing loss in children. If untreated, these middle ear conditions impact language development, learning, and more. Hearing testing is an important way to monitor middle ear function, check for infections, and evaluate any hearing fluctuations. For kids prone to middle ear problems, regular hearing re-checks ensure issues get treated promptly.
Why See an Audiologist?
Audiologists have specialized training and equipment to evaluate hearing ability comprehensively. They perform a battery of tests in a soundproof booth to determine the type, degree, and configuration of hearing loss. Audiologists can diagnose sensorineural, conductive, or mixed hearing loss and determine if amplification devices like hearing aids are appropriate. General practitioners lack the in-depth expertise, calibrated equipment, and soundproof environment to thoroughly assess hearing. While GPs can screen for gross hearing deficits, audiologists provide more nuanced diagnoses so patients get appropriate treatment and management. Seeing an audiologist directly provides efficient, accurate hearing healthcare.
Scheduling periodic hearing exams is one of the most vital things you can do for your hearing health at any age. Testing enables early detection and treatment of hearing loss. It also monitors age-related and noise-induced hearing changes, checks hearing aids, screens for other health issues, and provides baselines for comparison over time. To stay on top of your hearing health, get your hearing tested now if it’s been a while. Be diligent about following the recommendations of your audiologist for future rechecks. Taking these steps will go a long way in preserving your hearing and communication abilities.
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website’s content and editorial direction since 2018. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra’s expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.