Being able to spot the early symptoms of hearing loss can help you and your loved ones. It takes the average person around seven years to admit they have hearing loss and address it. But if you can notice it early, in yourself or a loved one, it is a lot easier to speed that process up.
If the cause of the hearing loss is due to an underlying condition, treating it fast can mean restoring your hearing to its normal levels. If you leave it unaddressed, there is an increased risk that the hearing loss becomes more severe or permanent.
There are potential complications for your overall health and wellbeing that come from untreated hearing loss. Numerous studies have found that it can lead to the following issues:
- Social isolation, stress and depression
- Withdrawal and loneliness
- Anger and irritability
- Mental fatigue
- Reduced focus and alertness, and therefore increased safety risk
- Increased risk for cognitive decline and dementia
Here’s how it typically works. When you ignore or miss hearing loss, your brain has to work harder to hear things. That can lead to greater strain and mental fatigue, as well as an increase in anxiety and angry outbursts in social situations. It can also lead to you from social interaction, such as conversations with friends and family.
That in turn can lead to your brain being less stimulated from conversations, as well as from hearing your regular TV shows, movies, music, and so on. Without that stimulation, it can lead to a decline in cognitive function, such as memory loss and dementia.
This process may take several years, but it takes people a long time to notice hearing loss, admit they have it, and then get treatment for it. Being able to spot hearing loss can help you or your loved one decide to address it as soon as possible. It can be addressed before it leads to the more serious complications.
Hearing Loss Signs and Symptoms
Here are the main signs and symptoms of sensorineural hearing loss.