The progression of hearing loss in most cases is subtle from a small amount of hearing loss to greater and greater loss, and it can be either gradual over time or sudden. The implications vary depending on the degree of hearing loss. At Sound Advice Hearing Solutions, we consult with you regarding hearing loss information and other facts related to the condition of your hearing.
May have problems in difficult listening situations such as in groups or in noise
May need visual cues (to watch the speaker's face and especially lips) to understand some conversations and certain speakers
May need to sit close to the speaker to understand the conversation
Having difficulty understanding conversations on the telephone
Having difficulty understanding one-on-one conversations
People have to speak up for a person to understand what is said
Very difficult to function in difficult listening situations such as in groups or in noise
Very difficult to understand conversations on the telephone
Having difficulty understanding one-on-one conversations
People have to speak up for a person to understand even part of what is said
Needs to sit close to the speaker to understand even part of the conversation
Needs visual cues (to watch the speaker's face and especially lips) to understand even part of any conversation and any speaker
May have difficulty identifying loud environmental sounds (sirens, telephone ring, car horn, etc.) making safety a concern
With Profound Hearing Loss, it is impossible to understand one-on-one conversations and the quality of the patient's speech is affected. The problem affects the ability to function normally in everyday life.
Do you feel that people mumble and do not speak clearly?
Do you understand some people better than others?
Do you frequently ask people to speak up or repeat themselves?
Do you have difficulty understanding on the phone?
Do you find it difficult to follow a conversation in a crowded room or with background noise?
Do you turn the volume of the television or radio up louder than is comfortable for others?
Do you find it difficult to hear in public places, such as an auditorium or church?
Do family and friends comment on your inability to hear?
Do you ever concentrate to listen so hard that you become fatigued?
Do you have ringing in your ears?
Wave or touch a person’s shoulder to draw his/her attention. You don’t have to make a big gesture - a small movement of the hand is usually enough
Waving in someone’s face is considered rude
Make and keep eye contact with the person – breaking eye contact may indicate the conversation is over
If you are in a noisy environment, see if you can move to a quiet spot
Ensure that you stand in a well-lit area. It is easier for them to read your lips / facial expressions
Be patient when either you or the person experiencing hearing loss have difficulty in understanding or getting the message across
Rephrase, rather than repeat sentences that the person does not understand
Speak clearly so that the person can see and read your lips. Lip reading is made more difficult if you chew gum or something obscures your face and mouth
Use your regular tone of voice when having a conversation, unless the person tells you otherwise
Use facial expressions to correspond with the topic and mood discussion
A good old pen and paper can also help when either of you has a hard time understanding
Use basic signs to support what you are saying, like pointing in a direction or waving goodbye
Make sure only one person is speaking at a time
Knowing what to do is the key to managing your hearing loss.
Use your hearing aids all day, every day
Move to a quiet place to talk if at all possible
Make sure you have good lighting. It will help with speechreading and facial cues
Try to avoid “other room” syndrome - always be in the same room as the person you are speaking with
Make sure the person you are speaking with is in the same room as you are and they are talking and looking at you, not with their back turned
On the phone, repeat the information back to the speaker to make sure you have it right, especially phone numbers and addresses
Sit closest to those you wish to speak with
Ask people to speak slowly and to look at you while speaking
Ask people to speak to you in a normal tone
In a restaurant – sit in a booth, not close to the kitchen or windows
Do not bluff and nod as if you understand something when you don’t. Ask questions, make sure you understand what is being said. Be honest and open about your hearing loss
Use assistive listening devices if necessary. This may include closed captioning on your television, an amplifier on your phone, signalling devices or an FM or infrared device. Many hearing aids today have Bluetooth that can be paired to a phone or other device with sound transmitted directly through the hearing aid
Make the best of the hearing you have and remember to keep your sense of humour
Fish do not have ears, but they can hear pressure changes through ridges on their body
The ear’s malleus, incus and stapes (otherwise known as the hammer, anvil and stirrup) are the smallest bones in the human body. All three together could fit together on a penny
Sound travels at the speed of 1,130 feet per second, or 770 miles per hour
Dogs can hear much higher frequencies than humans
Crickets have their hearing organs in their knees
Ears not only help you hear but also aid in balance
Snakes hear through the jaw bone and through a traditional inner ear. In essence, snakes have two distinct hearing mechanisms, which helps them hear and catch prey
Sitting in front of the speakers at a rock concert can expose you to 120 decibels, which will begin to damage hearing in only 7 1/2 minutes
Male mosquitoes hear with thousands of tiny hairs growing on their antennae
The inner ear is no larger than a pencil eraser in circumference
Your hearing can be damaged permanently even after a single incident of exposure to extremely loud noise (shotgun blast, explosion, etc.)
Your ears never stop hearing, even when you sleep. Your brain just ignores incoming sounds
Ears keep growing – Throughout your lifetime, your outer ear never stops growing
The roar that we hear when we place a seashell next to our ear is not the ocean, but rather the sound of blood surging through the veins in the ear
A giraffe can clean its ears with its 21-inch tongue
When you go up to a high elevation, your ears pop. This is because your eustachian tubes are equalizing the pressure between the outside air and the inside of your ear
In World War 1 parrots were kept on the Eiffel Tower in Paris because of their remarkable sense of hearing. When the parrots heard enemy aircraft, they warned everyone of the approaching danger long before any human ear would hear it
Myth: A mild hearing loss is not bad enough for a hearing aid
Fact: Everyone's hearing loss and listening needs are different. By working with your Hearing Aid Practitioner, you can determine if a hearing aid is needed and how much it will improve your hearing
Myth: Wearing two hearing aids is not necessary
Fact: We normally hear with two ears. Binaural (two-eared) hearing helps us localize sounds, assist us in noisy settings, and provide natural sound quality. Most people with hearing loss in both ears can understand better with two aids than with only onew much it will improve your hearing
Myth: I am too old to benefit from a hearing aid
Fact: Hearing helps you connect with the world and communicate with those close to you at any age. Your loved ones may appreciate your new hearing aids, too
Myth: A hearing loss means sounds need to be louder
Fact: Not really. In most cases, you can hear people talking, but have difficulty understanding what they're saying. Perhaps you can understand just fine in quiet places, but have trouble in noisy surroundings or in groups. Making all sounds louder just makes understanding harder. Hearing aids amplify the frequencies you need for better understanding
Myth: If I did have a hearing impairment, I'd certainly know about it
Fact: The truth is, hearing loss happens gradually and the signs are subtle at first. Our own built-in defences and ability to adapt make it difficult to self-diagnose. A simple Q & A hearing test can help you gain insight, while professional screening can provide a more definitive answer
Myth: Living with hearing loss is not a big deal
Fact: There are many psychological effects to hearing loss, including frustration, withdrawal, and depression. Trouble communicating with others creates a strain on relationships and a loss of self-esteem. It's far better to deal with hearing loss than to pretend it isn't happening - or to ignore the effect it is having on those around you