Believe it or not, it’s been more than 10 years since most individuals have had a hearing test.
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 always forgets to schedule her hearing exam.
Hearing assessments are essential for a wide variety of reasons, the most prominent of which is that it’s often challenging for you to detect the earliest indications 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 frequently should you have a hearing exam?
It’s disconcerting to think that Harper hasn’t had a hearing exam in 10 years. Or we may think it’s perfectly normal. How old she is will largely determine our reaction. That’s because we have different suggestions based on age.
- For individuals over 50: The general recommendation is that anyone over fifty years old should make an appointment for annual hearing exams Hearing loss is more likely to have an affect on your life as you age because the noise damage that has built-up over a lifetime will accelerate that impairment. In addition, there might be other health issues that can affect your hearing.
- For individuals under 50: It’s usually recommended that you undergo a hearing exam once every three to ten years or so. Of course, it’s ok to get a hearing assessment more often. But the bare minimum is once every ten years. If you’ve been subjecting 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 often. It’s fast, simple, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
Signs you should have your hearing assessed
Naturally, your yearly (or semi-annual) hearing assessment isn’t the only good time to make an appointment with us. Symptoms of hearing loss may start to appear. And in those cases, it’s important to reach out to us and schedule a hearing exam.
Some of the clues that should motivate you to have a hearing test include:
- Your ears sound muffled like you had water in them.
- You need people to talk louder or repeat what they said.
- You’re having a hard time hearing sounds in higher frequencies like consonants.
- Cranking your tv or car stereo up to excessively high volumes.
- Sudden hearing loss in one ear.
- You’re having a tough time making out conversations when you’re in a noisy setting.
- Phone conversations are becoming harder to hear.
It’s a strong hint that it’s time to get a hearing exam when the above warning signs start to accumulate. You’ll know what’s happening with your ears as soon as you come in for a test.
How will a hearing test help?
Harper could be late having her hearing test for several reasons.
Maybe she hasn’t thought about it.
It’s possible that she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But getting the suggested hearing tests has tangible benefits.
Even if you think your hearing is totally healthy, a hearing exam will help establish a baseline reading, which makes deviations in the future easier to identify. 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 create permanent hearing loss is the precise reason somebody like Harper should get tested regularly. Recognizing your hearing loss early by having your hearing checked when you should will help you keep your ears healthier, longer. If you allow your hearing to go, it can have an impact on your overall health.