Surprisingly, it’s been over 10 years since most people have had a hearing exam.
One of those people is Harper. She goes to see her doctor for her yearly medical test and has her teeth cleaned every six months. She even changes her timing belt every 6000 miles. But she never remembers to schedule her hearing exam.
Hearing tests are important for a variety of reasons, the most prominent of which is that it’s usually challenging for you to discover the earliest signs of hearing loss without one. Knowing how often she should get a hearing test will help Harper keep her ears (and hearing) as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
So, just how often should you have a hearing assessment?
If the last time Harper had a hearing assessment was over a decade ago, that’s disconcerting. Or we might think it’s perfectly normal. Our reaction will vary depending on how old she is. Depending on age, guidelines will vary.
- If you are over fifty years of age: The general recommendation is that anybody above the age of fifty should make an appointment for annual hearing exams As you get older, the noise damage you’ve sustained over a lifetime can begin to speed up, which means hearing loss is more likely to start affecting your life. In addition, there may be other health concerns that can impact your hearing.
- For people under 50: Once every 3 to 10 years is suggested for hearing exams. Naturally, it’s fine to get a hearing test more frequently. But once every decade is the bare minimum. If you’ve been exposing yourself to loud concert noise or work in a field with high decibel levels, you should err on the side of caution and get tested more frequently. It’s quick, simple, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
Indications you should get your hearing checked
Undoubtedly, there are other times, besides the annual exam, that you might want to come in for a consultation. Signs of hearing loss may begin to surface. And when they do you need to make an appointment with us for a hearing test.
Here are some indications that you need a hearing test:
- Having a difficult 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 sets in.)
- The volume on your stereo or television is getting louder and louder.
- You abruptly can’t hear out of one ear.
- Trouble hearing conversations in loud environments.
- Phone conversations are getting harder to hear.
- Asking people to slow down or repeat what they said during a conversation.
- Sounds become muffled; it begins to sound as though you always have water inside of your ears.
It’s a solid hint that it’s time to get a hearing exam 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?
Harper may be late getting her hearing test for a number of reasons.
Perhaps she hasn’t thought about it.
Maybe she’s purposely avoiding thinking about it. But there are concrete advantages to getting your hearing tested per recommendations.
We can set up a baseline for your hearing, which will help determine any future deviations, even if it’s presently healthy. If you can catch your hearing loss before it becomes obvious, you can better safeguard it.
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 getting your hearing checked when you should will help you keep your hearing healthier, longer. If you allow your hearing to go, it can have an affect on your general health.