Man carrying freshly harvested bananas on his back.

Bananas don’t taste the same as they once did. That’s because modern banana farmers grow a really different type of banana then they did in the past. These new bananas develop faster, are more resilient, and can thrive in a wider variety of climates. And they taste very different. So why haven’t you noticed the great banana swap? Well, the change wasn’t a quick one. The change was so gradual you never noticed.

Hearing loss can occur in the same way. It’s not like you wake up one day and can’t hear anything. For most people, hearing loss progresses gradually, frequently so slowly that you don’t really realize what’s happening.

That’s unfortunate because early intervention can help maintain your hearing. You can take measures to safeguard your hearing if you’re aware that it’s in danger. So it’s a good idea to be on the lookout for these seven signs of diminishing hearing.

You should have your hearing evaluated if you exhibit any of these 7 indicators

Hearing loss isn’t always well grasped as it develops gradually over time. It isn’t like you’ll be completely unable to hear the day after you went to that big rock show. Damage to your hearing (from that rock concert and other loud noises) builds up over time. So monitoring your hearing early will be the best way to safeguard it. You don’t want to put off on this because neglected hearing loss has been connected to problems like social separation, depression, and dementia.

These seven indicators are what you should be paying attention to out for. The only way to know for sure is to get a hearing exam, but these signs may encourage you to schedule an appointment earlier than you normally would have.

Sign #1: You’re constantly turning up the volume

Are you continually turning up the volume on your devices? Maybe they’re mixing the sound on your favorite shows differently now, or your favorite artists have begun to mumble. But it’s more likely that you’re compensating for your increasing hearing loss by turning the volume up on your devices.

If others keep telling you the volume is too loud this is particularly likely. They can often spot hearing issues in you faster than you can.

Sign #2: You missed the doorbell (or a phone call)

If you’re regularly missing some day to day sounds, that could be a sign of trouble with your ears. Here are some common sounds you may be missing:

  • Someone knocking on your door or ringing your doorbell: When your good friend suddenly walks into your house, take into account the possibility that they did actually knock, you just missed it.
  • Alarms and timers: Did you overcook dinner or sleep or sleep through your alarm clock? It might not be your alarm’s fault.
  • Your phone: Text messages coming to you but you’re missing them? You’re more likely to miss text messages than phone calls since nobody makes calls these days.

If your loved ones have pointed out that they’re kind of scared of driving with you because you miss so many day to day sounds (from honking horns to the beeping of a truck in reverse), that could be an indication that it’s time for a hearing assessment.

Sign #3: You’re continuously asking people to repeat themselves

Are your most commonly used words “what?” or “pardon?”? It’s likely that it’s an issue with your hearing that’s causing you to need people to repeat themselves when they talk to you. This is especially true if people do repeat themselves and you still can’t hear what they’re saying. Probably, time to schedule a hearing test.

Sign #4: It sounds as if everybody’s always mumbling

You could also call this sign #3-A, because they go rather well together. If it sounds as if everyone around you is continuously mumbling or talking under their breath, the reality is… well, they probably aren’t. That might be a relief (it’s no fun to be surrounded by individuals who you think are mumbling things about you). Instead, it’s more likely that you’re simply having a hard time hearing what they’re saying.

If you’re attempting to talk to somebody in a noisy setting or with someone who has a high pitched voice this can be particularly true.

Sign #5: Loved ones keep recommending you have your hearing checked

You most likely have a rather close relationship with your family and friends. And some of them probably have healthy hearing. If your members of your family (especially younger) are informing you that something isn’t right with your hearing, it’s a smart idea to listen to them (no pun intended).

We understand that it’s all too easy to sort of rationalize this recommendation away. Possibly you tell yourself it was just a bad day or whatever. But you could do your hearing a favor by heeding their advice.

Sign #6: You hear ringing in your ears (or experience vertigo)

Ringing in your ears is a condition called tinnitus. It’s very common. There are a couple of reasons why you might experience more ringing in your ears when you’re dealing with hearing loss:

  • Both can be triggered by damage: Damage causes both tinnitus and loss of hearing. So you’re more likely to develop tinnitus and hearing loss the more damaged your hearing is.
  • Hearing loss can make tinnitus more obvious: Tinnitus can be drowned-out by everyday noises in your day-to-day life. But as those everyday noises fade to the background (as a result of hearing loss), the tinnitus becomes relatively louder and significantly more noticeable.

In either case, if you’re noticing loud ringing, or even dizziness and vertigo, it could be an indication that something is going on in your ears. This means it’s time to come see us for a hearing test.

Sign #7: Socializing leaves you feeling fatigued

Perhaps the reason why social situations have become so tiring is because you’ve always been an introvert. Or it may be possible that you’re not hearing as well as you once did.

Your hearing may be the cause when you feel wiped out after leaving a restaurant or social affair. When there are gaps in what you hear, your brain works really hard to fill in those holes. This additional effort by your brain can leave you feeling depleted. So when you’re in especially challenging situations (such as a noisy space), you might experience even more exhaustion.

The first step is getting in touch with us for an appointment

Honestly, hearing damage is normal to everybody to some degree. If or when you develop hearing loss has a lot to do with how well you protect your ears when you’re exposed to loud sound.

So it may be an indication that the banana is changing if you experience any of these signs. Happily, you can take matters into your own hands and call us for an appointment. You’ll be able to get treatment as soon as you get diagnosed.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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