Connect Hearing audiologist, Andrew Glynn, shares five common signs of hearing loss that he sees regularly.
1. Trouble hearing people on the phone
One of the first signs of hearing loss can be struggling to hear people on the phone. The background noises and lack of face-to-face visibility often make it harder to understand someone. Those suffering from hearing loss may frequently ask people to repeat themselves or misunderstand what has been said.
2. Difficulty hearing in noisy environments
Hearing decline can make it difficult to hear in noisy environments, such as busy restaurants or crowded places. The background noises can mask the sounds of a conversation, making hearing a challenge.
Signs that this is occurring might include having trouble following the conversation when two or more people talk at the same time, complaining that others mumble or straining to understand conversations.
3. Needing the volume on full
Those experiencing hearing decline may start needing the volume on their phone, TV, or any other device to be on full, that can be a clear sign of hearing loss.
Sometimes, the volume will be turned up to a level that’s comfortable. Others will comment, “why is that on so loud?” which can be a sign that hearing may have declined.
4. Speaking too loudly
When experiencing hearing decline, the ability to process your own voice also becomes hindered, meaning that someone with hearing loss may speak too loudly.
If someone is speaking too loudly but doesn’t realise, it could be a sign that they are experiencing hearing loss.
5. Some sounds seem “too loud” or bring discomfort
It may seem surprising, but a symptom of hearing loss is having some sounds seem too loud! When the cells in the inner ear begin to degrade, the ones left sometimes respond too forcefully to a sound, making it seem louder than it is and even causing discomfort.
Those experiencing hearing loss often complain about dizziness, pain or ringing in their ears.
When it comes to hearing loss, make sure you’re paying attention to the signs and symptoms. Whether it’s for yourself or a loved one, recognising the signs is the first step in your hearing loss journey and you’ll be back to hearing and feeling heard in no time.
Susie Elelman, media personality and Connect Hearing ambassador has gone through this journey and understands the impact it has on our lives.
"Hearing loss is something I feel I’ve always lived with; when I was at school, I would sit up the front of the classroom but never really knew why. On reflection I think it was because I struggled to hear even way back then,” says Susie.
When she was in her 20s and working in television, Susie recalls that her workmates would always say that she didn’t need a microphone as her voice was so loud.
"I didn’t realise until I trialled my first hearing aids, how much I was shouting and that’s because I couldn’t hear my own voice,” says Susie.
You can read more about Susie’s experience with hearing loss here.