You want to be polite when you are talking to friends. You want your clients, colleagues, and manager to see that you’re fully engaged when you’re at work. You frequently find yourself asking family to repeat themselves because it was easier to tune out parts of the conversation that you weren’t able to hear very well.
You have to move in a little closer when you’re on conference calls. You pay attention to body language and facial clues and listen for verbal inflections. You read lips. And if everything else fails – you fake it.
Don’t fool yourself. Your straining to keep up because you missed most of the conversation. You may not know it, but years of cumulative hearing loss can have you feeling cut off and discouraged, making tasks at work and life at home unnecessarily difficult.
The ability for someone to hear is influenced by situational variables like background noise, competing signals, room acoustics, and how comfortable they are with their surroundings, according to research. These factors are relevant, but it can be much more extreme for individuals who have hearing loss.
Here are a few behaviors to help you figure out whether you are, in fact, fooling yourself into thinking hearing loss is not affecting your social and professional interactions, or whether it’s just the acoustics in their environment:
- Constantly having to ask people to repeat what they said
- Finding it harder to hear over the phone
- Having a hard time hearing what others behind you are saying
- Asking others what you missed after pretending you heard what someone was saying
- Cupping your ear with your hand or leaning in close to the person who is speaking without realizing it
- Thinking people aren’t talking clearly when all you seem to hear is mumbling
While it may feel like this snuck up on you in an all-of-a-sudden way, more than likely your hearing impairment didn’t happen overnight. The majority of people wait an average of 7 years before acknowledging the issue and finding help.
So if you’re noticing symptoms of hearing loss, you can be sure that it’s been going on for some time undetected. Hearing loss is no joke so stop fooling yourself and schedule an appointment now.