Surprisingly, it’s been over 10 years since most people have had a hearing exam.
Harper is one of them. She schedules a cleaning and checkup with her dentist every six months and she shows up dutifully for her yearly medical test. She even knows to get her timing belt replaced every 6000 miles! But her hearing exam normally gets neglected.
There are a number of reasons to get hearing tests, the most notable of which is that it’s often challenging for you to discover the earliest symptoms of hearing loss without one. Harper’s ears and hearing will remain as healthy as possible if she knows how frequently to get her hearing tested.
So, just how often should you get a hearing test?
If the last time Harper had a hearing exam was over a decade ago, that’s disconcerting. Or maybe it isn’t. Her age will largely determine our reaction. That’s because we have different suggestions based on age.
- For people over 50: Once annually is the suggested schedule for hearing tests 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. Moreover, as we age we’re more likely to have other health conditions that can have an impact on hearing.
- For individuals under 50: Once every 3 to 10 years is suggested for hearing exams. There’s no harm in getting your ears tested more frequently, of course! But the bare minimum is once every ten years. And you should play it safe and get tested more often if you work in a job that tends to be loud or if you go to a lot of concerts. It’s quick, easy, and painless so why wouldn’t you?
You need to have your hearing tested if you notice any of these signs.
Naturally, your annual (or semi-annual) hearing test isn’t the only good time to schedule an appointment with us. Perhaps you begin to notice some signs of hearing loss. And in those situations, it’s important to contact us and schedule a hearing assessment.
Here are a few clues that you need a hearing test:
- The volume on your stereo or TV is getting louder and louder.
- Having a really hard time hearing people when talking on the phone, mobile or otherwise.
- Trouble hearing conversations in loud environments.
- Sounds get muffled; it starts to sound as though you always have water in your ears.
- Rapid hearing loss in one ear.
- Asking people to talk slower or repeat what they said during a conversation.
- You’re having a difficult time hearing sounds in higher frequencies like consonants.
When the above warning signs start to add up, it’s a good sign that the ideal time to get a hearing exam is right now. You’ll know what’s going on with your ears as soon as you come in for an evaluation.
What are the advantages of hearing testing?
Harper could be late having her hearing checked for a number of reasons.
It might have slipped her mind.
Maybe she’s purposely avoiding thinking about it. But getting the recommended hearing tests has tangible benefits.
Even if you believe your hearing is completely healthy, a hearing test will help set a baseline reading, which makes deviations in the future easier to identify. You’ll be in a better position to safeguard your hearing if you recognize any early hearing loss before it becomes noticeable.
The point of regular hearing tests is that somebody like Harper will be able to detect problems before her hearing is permanently diminished. Your ears will remain healthy longer by getting these regular screenings. Think about the impact of hearing loss on your overall health, it’s that important.