Hearing loss is a problem that many people suffer from, even children. It’s a condition that doesn’t discriminate, and it’s hard to deal with is an understatement. However, the good news is that not all hope is lost for those who have it. One device can help people with hearing loss hear again: hearing aids.
Hearing aids are small electronic devices worn in the ear to help people hear better. They need to be adjusted carefully to work properly, and the person wearing them has to wear them for long periods so that the sound can be amplified. Since hearing loss affects the quality of life, one must know its signs and whether or not they’ll need a hearing aid.
Signs of Hearing Loss
The following are some of the most common signs of hearing loss:
- People don’t seem to hear you when you speak to them.
- You have difficulty hearing conversations in groups and in noisy places.
- You have trouble hearing from a distance.
- You cannot hear soft sounds like whispers or the rustling of leaves.
- Your loved ones, especially your spouse and children, have noticed a change in your hearing capacity.
- You complain of earaches and sore ears.
- You’ve had an ear infection in the past.
Causes of Hearing Loss
There are different reasons why people suffer various instances of hearing loss. There are common ones like old age, the most common cause of hearing loss, followed by genetics and then disease. Medical conditions, birth complications, and head injuries can also increase a person’s risk of hearing loss.
There are other instances of hearing loss that is sometimes hereditary. For example, children born with obstructive hearing loss may have a parent who has this condition. If your family has a history of hearing loss, you may be at risk.
Levels of Hearing Loss
There are three different levels of hearing loss: mild, moderate, and severe.
Mild hearing loss is when a person can still hear low sounds like whispering. But these sounds are harder to hear than usual, so you need to strain. Hearing conversation in groups is possible, though it can be hard to decipher words.
On the other hand, moderate hearing loss is when a person can hear medium-pitched sounds like horns and telephones but has difficulty understanding what people are saying to them.
Finally, severe hearing loss is when a person has the most challenging time hearing sounds, especially high-pitched ones. They won’t be able to hear most sounds, and certain words will be hard to understand. This level of hearing loss can affect one’s quality of life, and you’ll be at constant risk of getting into accidents and injuries.
Getting a Hearing Aid
The key is to identify hearing loss early and manage it, which can be done by consulting with an audiologist. They will assess hearing loss using different tests and tools and determine the type of hearing loss you have. Once you have the hearing loss diagnosis and your audiologist has educated you about your condition, you can decide on the type of hearing aid you need.
Hearing aids are fitted to a person’s unique hearing loss needs. There are two types of hearing aids: analog and digital. The latter consists of computer chips, while the former consists of a tube that amplifies sound. Both of these hearing aids can be adjusted to fit your needs. Be sure to consult with your audiologist so they can help you find the right type of hearing aid.
Do You Need One or Two?
Whether you need one or two hearing aids is a question that your audiologist should be able to answer. Having only one hearing aid is not as effective as wearing two. The reason is that they work together to amplify sounds better.
If you only wear one, you will have to choose which ear to wear it on. As a general rule, you should wear hearing aids on the ears where sounds are being heard the least. This will provide a better effect since both ears will amplify the sound. Wearing one in each ear will help but is not as effective as wearing two in the same ear.
They can be adjusted to the right volume and frequency to amplify the right sounds. Consult your audiologist if you want to learn more about the best configuration for you.
What to Expect When Wearing Hearing Aids
When you start wearing hearing aids, you will notice that your ears will feel uncomfortable, and you may even feel pressure in your ear. This is normal and will go away in a few days as you get used to wearing them. In short, you must wear them as often as possible.
Doing so will allow you to adjust to the feeling of hearing aids and learn how to use them appropriately. Wearing them for long periods will also allow your brain to acclimate to the amplified sound, supplementing your hearing.
Hearing loss can occur at any age and affect anyone. You must know its signs and not dismiss it as just a part of aging. If a loved one complains about their hearing, try to lend support and let them know that it’s nothing to be ashamed of. As long as you identify the condition early and manage it effectively, you can live a normal life.
If you’re looking for the best hearing specialists in Rhode Island, look no further than Hear More Associates! Our audiologists conduct free hearing tests to ensure that your hearing is in good condition, and we also provide solutions for those experiencing hearing problems. Simply go to our website to schedule an appointment!