It’s difficult to comprehend but most people have gone over ten years without getting a hearing test.
Harper is one of them. She schedules a cleaning and checkup with her dentist every six months and she reports dutifully for her yearly medical exam. She even replaces her timing belt every 6000 miles. But she always forgets to schedule her hearing test.
Hearing evaluations are essential for a multitude of reasons, early detection of hearing loss being one of the more significant. 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 frequently should you have a hearing test?
If the last time Harper took a hearing exam was over ten years ago, that’s alarming. Or we might think it’s perfectly normal. Her age will greatly determine our reaction. Depending on age, recommendations will vary.
- If you are over fifty years old: The general recommendation is that anybody over the age of fifty should schedule annual hearing assessments As you get older, the noise damage you’ve sustained over a lifetime can begin to accelerate, which means hearing loss is more likely to start affecting your life. Moreover, as we age we’re more likely to be dealing with other health issues that can have an impact on hearing.
- If you are less than fifty years old: It’s generally recommended that you take a hearing test about once every three to ten years. There’s no harm in having your ears checked more often, of course! But the bare minimum is once every ten years. 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 quick, simple, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
You need to have your hearing checked if you notice any of these signs.
Naturally, your yearly (or semi-annual) hearing assessment isn’t the only good time to schedule an appointment with us. Perhaps you begin to notice some symptoms of hearing loss. And in those cases, it’s important to contact us and schedule a hearing test.
Some of the clues that should prompt you to get a hearing exam include:
- The volume on your stereo or TV is getting louder and louder.
- Your ears seem muffled like you had water in them.
- You need people to talk louder or repeat themselves.
- 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 takes hold.)
- Trouble hearing conversations in noisy environments.
- Sudden hearing loss in one ear.
- Phone conversations are getting more difficult to hear.
When the above warning signs begin to add up, it’s a good sign that the perfect time to get a hearing test is right now. You’ll know what’s happening with your ears as soon as you come in for a test.
How will a hearing test be beneficial?
Harper may be late having her hearing test for a number of reasons.
Maybe she hasn’t thought about it.
Maybe she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But there are concrete benefits to getting your hearing tested per recommendations.
Even if you believe your hearing is completely healthy, a hearing exam will help establish a baseline reading, which makes deviations in the future easier to detect. You’ll be in a better position to protect your hearing if you recognize any early hearing loss before it becomes noticeable.
Detecting hearing problems before they produce permanent hearing loss is the precise reason somebody like Harper should get tested regularly. Your ears will remain healthy longer by getting these regular screenings. Think about the effects of hearing loss on your overall health, it’s that important.