You want to be polite when you are talking to friends. At work, you want to look involved, even enthralled with what your manager/co-worker/clients are saying. You often find yourself asking 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 move in closer. You look closely at body language and facial cues and listen for verbal inflections. You read lips. And if that doesn’t work, you nod as if you heard every word.
Maybe your in denial. Your straining to keep up because you missed most of what was said. You may not recognize it, but years of progressive hearing loss can have you feeling cut off and discouraged, making projects at work and life at home unnecessarily overwhelming.
The ability for a person to hear is impacted by situational variables such as background sound, contending signals, room acoustics, and how acquainted they are with their surroundings, according to research. But for individuals who suffer from hearing loss these factors are made even more difficult.
Here are some habits to help you figure out whether you are, in fact, fooling yourself into thinking hearing impairment isn’t affecting your social and professional relationships, or whether it’s just the acoustics in their environment:
- Cupping your hands over your ear or leaning in close to the person who is speaking without realizing it
- Pretending to comprehend, only to follow up with others to get what you missed
- Feeling like people are mumbling and not talking clearly
- Finding it harder to hear phone conversations
- Unable to hear people talking from behind you
- Constantly having to ask people to repeat what they said
While it might feel like this snuck up on you suddenly, chances are your hearing impairment didn’t happen overnight. The majority of people wait 7 years on average before accepting the problem and finding help.
This means if your hearing loss is a problem now, it has most likely been going un-addressed and untreated for some time. So start by scheduling an appointment now, and stop fooling yourself, hearing loss is no joke.