Believe it or not, it’s been over 10 years since most individuals have had a hearing assessment.
Harper is one of them. She schedules a cleaning and checkup with her dentist every six months and she shows up dutifully for her annual medical examination. She even changes her timing belt every 6000 miles. But she always forgets to schedule her hearing test.
Hearing evaluations are important for a variety of reasons, the most prominent of which is that it’s often difficult for you to detect the earliest symptoms of hearing loss without one. Determining how often she should get their hearing tested will help Harper keep her ears (and hearing) as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
So, just how frequently should you get a hearing assessment?
It’s alarming to think that Harper hasn’t had a hearing exam in 10 years. Or we may think it’s completely normal. Our reaction will vary depending on how old she is. Depending on age, guidelines will vary.
- If you are over fifty years old: Once a year is the suggested schedule for hearing tests in people over 50 years old. Hearing loss is more likely to have an impact on your life as you get older because the noise damage that has built-up over a lifetime will accelerate that impairment. In addition, there could be other health problems that can affect your hearing.
- If you are less than fifty years old: Once every 3 to 10 years is suggested for hearing exams. There’s no harm in having your ears tested more frequently, of course! But the bare minimum is once every ten years. And you should be cautious and get tested more often if you work in an occupation that tends to be noisy or if you go to a lot of concerts. After all, it’s painless, simple, and there’s really no good reason not to do it.
You need to have your hearing assessed if you experience any of these signs.
Naturally, your yearly (or semi-annual) hearing test isn’t the only good time to make an appointment with us. Symptoms of hearing loss might begin to appear. And when they do you need to make an appointment with us for a hearing test.
Some of the signs that should prompt you to get a hearing exam include:
- Sudden hearing loss in one ear.
- Turning your tv or car stereo up to excessively high volumes.
- Trouble hearing conversations in noisy environments.
- Having a really tough time understanding people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
- Sounds get muffled; it begins to sound as though you always have water inside of your ears.
- Having a tough time hearing consonants (in general, consonants are spoken in a higher wavelength than vowels, and it’s those high-frequency sounds that are frequently the first to go as hearing loss sets in.)
- Asking people to slow down or repeat themselves during a conversation.
When the above warning signs start to add up, it’s a good indication that the ideal time to get a hearing test is right now. The sooner you get your hearing tested, the sooner you’ll know what’s happening with your ears.
How will a hearing test help?
There are lots of reasons why Harper might be late in getting her hearing test.
It may have slipped her mind.
Maybe she’s intentionally avoiding thinking about it. But there are tangible benefits to having your hearing tested per guidelines.
We can establish a baseline for your hearing, which will help determine any future deviations, even if it’s presently healthy. You’ll be in a better position to safeguard your hearing if you detect any early hearing loss before it becomes noticeable.
The reason for regular hearing tests is that somebody like Harper will be able to detect problems before her hearing is permanently damaged. Catching your hearing loss early by having your hearing checked when you should will help you keep your ears healthier, longer. Think about the effects of hearing loss on your overall health, it’s that important.