When Should I Begin Annual Hearing Tests?

When Should I Begin Annual Hearing Tests?

The quick answer: ASAP.

If you’ve never had a hearing test, or if your last hearing test was given to you in grade school, you should schedule one with us at Lifestyle Hearing Solutions today.

Hearing specialists recommend taking a baseline hearing test upon reaching adulthood (or ASAP if you haven’t already!) and then annually from the time you are 50 years old.

Hearing loss is a gradual condition, and as such, we do not immediately notice its effects. Overtime, untreated hearing loss could lead to a number of negative consequences to our health and well-being. If you can treat it early, wouldn’t you want to?

Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number!

Hearing loss can occur to anyone, at any age.

Though hearing loss was once considered a condition isolated in aging, recent studies have found a 30% increase in the risk for hearing loss in younger populations, between ages 12 and 35, compared to previous generations in the 1980s and 1990s. The World Health Organization estimates that 1.1 million young people are at risk for permanent hearing loss, due to unsafe use of personal electronic devices and listening to audio at high volumes.

At the same time, hearing loss does affect older Americans at a high rate: one in three people aged 65 or older and 50% of people aged 75 or older experience some degree of hearing loss. Statistics also show that nearly 15% of Baby Boomers (ages 41 to 59) experience some degree of hearing loss.

As the third most common physical condition in the United States, hearing loss affects 48 million Americans.

Hearing Loss on the Job

Approximately 60% of the American workforce experiences some degree of hearing loss. Furthermore, occupational hearing hazards lead to cases of hearing loss due to workplace noise in the past 25 years, according to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration.

Untreated hearing loss often leads to greater issues, especially when it comes to your job. Economically, data analysis shows that people with untreated hearing loss have less earning power than people with normal hearing or treated hearing loss, due to difficulties in the workplace. With untreated hearing loss, the ability to communicate becomes difficult. With the brain working overtime to make up for unclear signals, people with untreated hearing loss may begin to experience a dip in their productivity.

Why Wait?

Even with the statistics of hearing loss prevalence and related problems, it takes an average of seven years from the time people first notice changes in their hearing before they decide to do something about it and take a hearing test to determine their hearing abilities.

Hearing specialists and researchers recommend treating hearing loss sooner rather than later, in order to maintain one’s cognitive abilities. The neural pathways in our brains which recognize sounds and speech are dulled when underused, as in the case of untreated hearing loss. Over time, these pathways may become dull from underuse. As a result, this may require a longer adjustment period when you do seek treatment and use hearing devices to amplify sounds.

The various problems related to hearing loss may be preventable by scheduling a hearing test at the first signs of changes in your hearing ability. Pay attention to the signs of hearing loss: you may find yourself turning up the volume on your phone and electronic devices; you may find it difficult to hear your dining companion from across the table at a busy restaurant; you may find conversations difficult to follow, or that people are not speaking clearly.

Regardless of your age, your hearing abilities may begin to change at any time. As a preventative measure, consider scheduling a hearing test annually in your 50s. Hearing loss is treatable, with an influx of hearing aids equipped with wireless technology and diverse capabilities. The first step to better hearing health is to schedule a free hearing test and consultation with us.

Visit Us at Lifestyle Hearing Solutions

You’ve had a hearing test many years ago, and you don’t know your hearing abilities now. You’ve never had a hearing test before and you’re nervous. You’ve had a few hearing tests here or there, but have been experiencing changes in your hearing. Whatever your current situation, we are here to guide you through the steps to better hearing health. Contact us at Lifestyle Hearing Solutions today to schedule an appointment.

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Visit us today for a complimentary hearing test with one of our Arizona licensed hearing professionals!

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