It’s hard to believe but most individuals have gone more than ten years without having a hearing test.
One of those individuals is Harper. She schedules a cleaning and checkup with her dentist every six months and she reports dutifully for her annual medical exam. She even knows to get her timing belt changed every 6000 miles! But she never remembers to schedule her hearing exam.
Hearing assessments are important for a multitude of reasons, early detection of hearing loss being one of the most important. Determining how frequently she should get their hearing tested will help Harper keep her ears (and hearing) as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
So you should get your hearing examined how often?
If the last time Harper got a hearing assessment was over a decade ago, that’s alarming. Or we may think it’s completely normal. Her age will largely determine our reaction. Depending on age, recommendations will differ.
- If you are over fifty years of age: The general recommendation is that anybody over fifty years old should schedule annual hearing exams Hearing loss is more likely to have an impact on your life as you age because the noise damage that has built-up over a lifetime will speed up that impairment. In addition, there could be other health concerns that can affect your hearing.
- For individuals under 50: It’s generally recommended that you have a hearing test once every three to ten years or so. Obviously, it’s fine to get a hearing test more often. But the bare minimum is once every decade. If you’ve been exposing yourself to loud concert noise or work in an industry with high volume levels, you should err on the side of caution and get tested more frequently. It’s fast, simple, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
Indications you should get your hearing checked
Naturally, your annual (or semi-annual) hearing test isn’t the only good time to make an appointment with us. Symptoms of hearing loss might begin to crop up. And in those situations, it’s important to reach out to us and schedule a hearing test.
Some of the clues that should prompt you to have a hearing test include:
- You’re having a hard time hearing conversations when you’re in a loud setting.
- Sudden hearing loss in one ear.
- Phone conversations are getting more difficult to hear.
- Your ears sound muffled as if you had water in them.
- The volume on your stereo or TV is getting louder and louder.
- 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 often the first to go as hearing loss takes hold.)
- Asking people to slow down or repeat what they said during a conversation.
It’s a solid hint that it’s time to get a hearing test when the above warning signs begin to accumulate. You’ll know what’s going on with your ears as soon as you come in for a test.
What are the benefits of hearing testing?
There are lots of reasons why Harper may be late in having her hearing checked.
It might have slipped her mind.
Maybe she’s purposely avoiding thinking about it. But there are tangible benefits to getting 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. If you can detect your hearing loss before it becomes obvious, you can better protect it.
Detecting hearing issues before they create permanent hearing loss is the exact reason somebody like Harper should get tested regularly. Your ears will stay healthy longer by getting these regular screenings. If you let your hearing go, it can have an affect on your general health.