Recognizing hearing loss in a loved one
Several years ago when my kids were teens I thought I was losing my hearing. I was constantly asking my family to repeat themselves; it felt like I couldn’t hear all their sentences. They found it quite annoying! Eventually, they insisted that I go get a hearing test.
I went in for a hearing exam and put on special earphones. The test is basically a range of tones directed to one ear at a time. The loudness of sound is measured in decibels (dB) and the test goes through a range of tones from loud to quiet. During the test you are asked to indicate whether they can be heard.
A whisper is about 20 dB, loud music ranges 80-120 dB, and a jet engine is about 180 dB. The tone of a sound is measured in frequencies (Hz). Low bass tones range 50-60 Hz, high-pitched tones range 10,000 Hz or higher. A normal hearing range is 250-8,000 Hz at 25 dB or lower.
What did my test discover? There is nothing wrong with my hearing at all. The audiologist said that I have selective hearing, ha! I guess that’s what can be expected with someone with three teenagers!
While my story may be silly, hearing loss is nothing to fool around with. Luckily there have been many advances in hearing science and people with hearing loss can now lead a normal life, never missing a child’s voice or the wind in the trees.
Hearing loss can lead to isolation
My husband’s grandmother was not so lucky. As happens to so many people, age brought on hearing loss. I would say it actually sneaked up on her. Month after month it became apparent that she could not keep up with our conversations and she was missing out on the things her grandchildren were doing.
Telephone conversations became extremely hard and eventually she stopped talking on the phone altogether. That’s tough because she was in Arizona and all of her grandchildren lived in other states.
It doesn’t have to be this way. There is no reason to isolate yourself because of hearing loss. Seniors wish to keep their independence as long as possible and getting hearing aids can mean keeping a self-reliant lifestyle.
Eventually, we were able to get her to the doctor for a test and she started wearing hearing aids. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about, everyone needs help at some time, and the alternative is not an option. Why go through life missing out on the conversations of your loved ones when you don’t have to?
Recognize the Signs
- Difficulty hearing people on the telephone. Have they turned the phone volume setting to the max and it still isn’t enough?
- Family and friends start to notice that the TV is too loud—and they are not just talking about the commercials.
- It becomes a strain to focus on and follow conversations. The may be exhausted or have a bad headache at the end of a day because of the extra work it takes to hear those around them.
- You notice the have a hard time following a conversation if two or more people are talking at once.
- In noisy environments, they have great difficulty hearing conversations. It might no longer be a pleasure to eat out at loud restaurants or bars
- Your loved one thinks people sound like they are mumbling.
- Your loved one often misunderstands what people say to them.
- You notice that high pitched women’s and children’s voices are particularly hard for your loved one to hear.
Get a free hearing test
Hearing loss can be scary for all involved but fortunately, there is help available. Did you know you can schedule a free hearing test at a Miracle-Ear location near you? Doing this one simple thing has the ability to make a big impact on your family and relationships.
Here’s another benefit – you can turn down the TV volume from 35! Your neighbors and family will thank you.
Encourage that “stubborn” someone in your life to do it! Get a #free hearing consultation at a @MiracleEar location near you https://ooh.li/4218966 #HearABetterDay #ad