Believe it or not, it’s been more than 10 years since most individuals have had a hearing exam.
One of those people is Harper. She schedules a cleaning and checkup with her dentist every six months and she shows up dutifully for her annual medical exam. She even replaces her timing belt every 6000 miles. But her hearing exam normally gets ignored.
There are many reasons to get hearing tests, 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 assessment?
If the last time Harper took a hearing assessment was over ten years ago, that’s disconcerting. Or we may think it’s completely normal. How old she is will greatly determine our reaction. That’s because we have different guidelines based on age.
- If you are over fifty years of age: Once annually is the suggested routine for hearing assessments in people over 50 years old. As you get older, the noise damage you’ve incurred over a lifetime can begin to speed up, which means hearing loss is more likely to start impacting your life. Plus, there might be other health concerns that can impact your hearing.
- For individuals under 50: Once every 3 to 10 years is suggested for hearing assessments. Naturally, it’s fine to get a hearing exam more frequently. But the bare minimum is once every decade. And you should be cautious and get tested more often if you work in an occupation that tends to be loud or if you go to a lot of concerts. After all, it’s painless, simple, and there’s really no practical reason not to do it.
Signs you should get your hearing tested
Needless to say, your annual (or semi-annual) hearing assessment isn’t the only good time to make an appointment with us. Signs of hearing loss may begin to surface. And when they do you should make an appointment with us for a hearing assessment.
Here are a few clues that you need a hearing exam:
- You need people to speak louder or repeat what they said.
- The volume on your stereo or TV is getting louder and louder.
- You abruptly can’t hear out of one ear.
- You’re having a hard time making out conversations when you’re in a loud setting.
- Having a tough 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 sets in.)
- Your ears seem muffled like you had water in them.
- Phone conversations are getting more difficult to hear.
It’s a solid hint that it’s time to get a hearing exam when the above warning signs start to add up. You’ll know what’s going on with your ears as soon as you come in for a test.
How will a hearing test be beneficial?
Harper could be late getting her hearing checked for several reasons.
It may have slipped her mind.
Maybe she just doesn’t want to deal with it. But getting the suggested hearing tests has concrete benefits.
Even if you believe your hearing is totally healthy, a hearing exam will help establish a baseline reading, which makes deviations in the future easier to detect. If you can detect your hearing loss before it becomes obvious, you can better safeguard it.
The reason for regular hearing tests is that someone like Harper will be able to detect problems before her hearing is permanently diminished. Your ears will stay healthy longer by getting these regular screenings. If you let your hearing go, it can have an impact on your general health.