You appear to be hearing just fine, even though it seems that everyone around you is speaking a different language! You may be able to hear sounds from your television but seem to have trouble making out what is being said. Your wife is speaking to you and you can hear her voice, but her words seem all mumbled and unclear. If these situations sound familiar, you may have hearing loss.
It may come as a surprise, but in general, the Better Hearing Institute states that the average person takes about seven years before they finally notice that they may have some form of hearing loss. Hearing loss is often a gradual process, which is why people may not identify it immediately. Over time, as people grow more reliant on reading lips or using social cues to keep them involved in conversations, these may be indicative of hearing loss.
Our ears are constantly listening to sounds, whether we want them to or not. Being able to make sense of those sounds is what we call hearing, and that process takes place in the brain. If the sound signals travelling to the brain are deteriorated or jumbled up, it can be troublesome for the brain to decipher these signals and make sense of the sound.
Over time, hearing loss places additional burden on our brains to try and make sense of the sounds with limited available inputs from the ears. This can cause cognitive overload which can lead to dementia. This is why it is imperative to treat hearing loss even at its early stage since untreated damage to hearing can result in other severe health issues.
Speech sounds are often the first things to deteriorate when it comes to hearing loss. This is because the sounds of speech happen at certain frequencies that are usually the first ones to become diminished when struck with hearing loss. This is especially true for higher pitched sounds such as the sounds of babies and of women.
Once you take a hearing test, your audiologist will be able to guide you as to the best solution to tackle your hearing problem. Hearing aids are often recommended for those with hearing loss since they help amplify speech sounds to an audible range.
Hearing loss can cause several health issues, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, and even lead to injuries due to falling. This is why it is important to take good care of your hearing health and seek treatment if you suspect hearing loss.
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