You want to be polite when you are talking with friends. You want your clients, colleagues, and boss to recognize that you’re completely involved when you’re at work. You often find yourself needing family to repeat themselves because it was less difficult to tune out parts of the discussion that you couldn’t hear very well.
On conference calls you lean in closer. You pay attention to body language and facial clues and listen for verbal inflections. You try to read people’s lips. And if none of that works, you nod in understanding as if you heard everything.
Maybe your in denial. You missed a lot of what was said, and you’re straining to catch up. Life at home and tasks at work have become unjustifiably difficult and you are feeling frustrated and cut off due to years of progressive hearing loss.
According to some studies, situational factors like environmental acoustics, background noise, contending signals, and environmental awareness have a strong influence on the way a person hears. These factors are relevant, but it can be a lot worse for people who suffer from hearing loss.
Here are a few behaviors to help you identify whether you are, in truth, convincing yourself that your hearing impairment isn’t affecting your social and professional interactions, or whether it’s just the acoustics in their environment:
- Thinking people aren’t talking clearly when all you can hear is mumbling
- Missing what people are saying when on phone conversations
- Asking others what you missed after pretending to hear what someone was saying
- Constantly having to ask people to repeat themselves
- Cupping your ear with your hand or leaning in close to the person talking without realizing it
- Unable to hear people talking behind you
Hearing loss most likely didn’t happen overnight even though it could feel as if it did. Acknowledging and getting help for hearing impairment is something that takes most people 7 years or more.
So if you’re noticing symptoms of hearing loss, you can be sure that it’s been going on for some time unnoticed. Hearing loss is no joke so stop fooling yourself and make an appointment right away.