When someone has mild hearing loss they are unable to hear sounds that are quieter than 25 decibels (dB). These sounds will typically consist of things like dripping water, whispered conversations, feet shuffling, leaves rustling and birds chirping.
Hearing professionals use an audiogram to test your hearing and identify the range of your hearing loss which may include normal, mild, moderate, moderately severe, severe, and profound. Normally your hearing as an adult would ideally be between 0 – 25 dB across all frequencies. Otherwise, you may find yourself in need of a hearing aid.
Preventing Mild Hearing Loss
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the most preventable type of hearing loss but millions of Americans have still been diagnosed with it. There are a lot of different types of protective devices that are available today to help you not develop NIHL. These include:
- Foam earplugs are sold by most drug stores and are ideal for protecting your ears against basic types of noise.
- Musicians can get custom-made devices such as in-ear monitors that’ll help control how much sound is heard from each of the band members and their instruments.
- People who enjoy going to a concert but want to protect their hearing should look into filtered earplugs.
- Hunters who want to block out the loud sound of the gun blast but still want to be able to have a normal conversation with those around them should look into percussive filters.
Besides taking preventative measures to avoid hearing loss you should also seek treatment after noticing any change in your hearing. This change in your hearing could be caused by something as minor as an ear infection or you may have a viral or autoimmune issue with your inner ear.
Why You Should Seek Treatment
Recent studies show that untreated hearing loss can increase the likelihood of cognitive decline. The use of hearing instruments, while certainly helping your ability to hear and understand, can also get more sound information to the brain which may slow down the cognitive decline which may be hearing related.
Why You Shouldn’t Wait to Get Treatment
Most people wait about 7 years after first discovering that they’re suffering from hearing loss to get treatment. This gives your hearing loss time to progress and your brain time to “forget” how to properly hear sound. Over time, you’ll also be less able to understand speech. This is why it’s so important to catch a mild hearing loss.
Getting the Help You Need
The first thing you should do is schedule an appointment with a hearing healthcare professional to have your hearing evaluated. This will help them know whether you actually need a hearing aid. If you live in Clearwater; Palm Harbor, Oldsmar, and Safety Harbor, FL, contact Countryside Hearing Aid Services today.
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