Hearing loss actually starts out as a hearing problem for most people. It comes on gradually. First, you might not hear the birds chirp in the morning or the sound of the wind blowing your favorite wind chime on a summer day. These small changes may go unnoticed for quite some time. Next, your hearing problem progresses as voices become more muffled. You have to ask others to repeat themselves more often and phone conversations become more difficult. Even in these cases, many people just attribute the issue to a hearing problem not hearing loss. It is very common to continue to let the hearing problem grow worse. Pretty soon you can’t hear a grandchild’s question. Others become frustrated with having to repeat themselves, and you can no longer chat with your spouse while the television is on due to the loud volume.

So why do so many people find it hard to admit that their hearing problem is actually hearing loss? Hearing loss conjures up many negative feelings for most of us. The phrase alone makes us feel old. We may even have memories of parents or grandparents with big clunky hearing aids always visibly adjusting the volume up and down. Yes, hearing loss does commonly happen because of the natural aging-process, but that actually makes hearing loss quite common and today’s hearing aid technology is leaps and bounds better than in the past.

Something else to keep in mind, hearing loss is mostly treatable. You do not need to continue to carry your hearing problem around, but instead, you can seek help from a hearing care professional and actually improve your hearing. It has been shown that when we hear better we are more active and engaged in the world around us. In fact, people who wear hearing aids commonly report that their quality of life and relationships are improved.

Make your hearing health a priority. Schedule an appointment to have your hearing tested.