You know what it’s like to try to ignore a toothache? It can be pretty difficult. After a while, you end up having no alternative but to consult a dentist. The same thing takes place when your eyesight starts to blur. You’ll most likely contact an ophthalmologist when you start to have difficulty reading street signs. But the issue is, when your hearing starts to go you may not show such urgency.
This would most likely be a mistake. Neglected hearing loss can be the reason for significant health problems (specifically mental problems). Regrettably, it’s pretty difficult to address your diminishing hearing if you aren’t aware of it. And there’s the second challenge.
You May Have Hearing Loss if You Detect These Symptoms
We often take our hearing for granted. A high volume music festival? No biggie. Blasting ear pods? That’s just how you enjoy your podcasts. But all of those choices, especially in the long run, will have a significant impact on your overall hearing.
It can, unfortunately, be difficult to detect these impacts. Hearing loss can sneak up on you gradually, with symptoms that advance so slowly as to be effectively invisible. So you should take some time to educate yourself on some basic red flags (and to deal with them sooner than later):
- Voices of those near you (friends, family, co-workers) sounds muffled or distorted
- You continually blow the speakers in your earpods because you have the volume up too high
- You always need to turn up the volume on your devices
- You have a difficult time falling asleep at night and feel tired for no reason
- You regularly have to ask people to repeat what they said
- Your short term memory tends to suddenly fail sometimes
- When you listen to everyday speech, you have an especially tough time making out consonants
- When you’re in a crowded noisy setting you have a difficult time keeping up with conversations
These symptoms, red flags, or warnings are all rather well recognized. At first, you will be somewhat ignorant of your symptoms, particularly if they come on slowly, because your brain will immediately start to compensate. That’s the reason why you should make an appointment with your hearing care professional because these warning symptoms should be taken seriously.
What Happens if You Neglect Your Hearing Loss?
Some people are, indeed, obstinate. Or the idea of wearing hearing aids is simply too unwelcome. They have this fear that wearing a hearing aid is some sort of immediate marker for old age (as if constantly asking people to speak louder is a signifier of everlasting youth). But that’s not actually the situation (most hearing aids can be quite discreet, and being capable of conversing fluently is a benefit, too).
Still, if you ignore hearing loss it may result in several issues:
- Your relationships could fray: When you have a hard time comprehending what your family and friends are saying, something can change in the relationship: you begin having fewer conversations with them. You stop saying hi, you stop checking in, you pull away. And that can ruin some of those relationships, specifically if the problem is hearing loss that you have kept secret (and not because you’re mad at them).
- Your hearing might get worse: If you don’t utilize hearing aids or increased hearing protection, You’ll continue to turn up your devices. Or you won’t utilize earplugs when you go to rock concerts. Which means you’ll keep doing damage to your ears and your hearing will almost certainly keep declining because of it.
- You could suffer from cognitive decline and depression: As your relationships falter and going out becomes more difficult, you might start to experience signs of depression. You might also begin to experience some mental decline without the auditory activation your brain is used to, certain changes start to take place within your neural physiology. This can bring about long term cognitive challenges if your hearing loss isn’t treated.
Hearing Loss Shouldn’t be Neglected
Unmistakably, ignoring your hearing loss can cause bigger and more substantial issues in the future. Conversely, your quality of life can be considerably improved by acknowledging and managing your hearing loss. Your daily life is more full and your relationships get better when you begin to hear better. And your overall health will be enhanced by seeing a hearing specialist or at least downloading a noise monitoring app.
Hearing loss is certainly a health condition you shouldn’t neglect. The sooner you find the right treatment, the happier you’ll be. Manage your hearing loss before it gets too severe to ignore.