Woman suffering from hearing loss struggling to hear on the phone.

It’s not like you just wake up one morning, and your hearing is gone. Hearing loss comes in degrees for most people, especially when it comes to aging. Age-related hearing loss affects about one in three people in this country. Often, the change isn’t even recognized until after the age of 75. You might not detect the trouble right away even though some signs show up earlier.

The early symptoms of progressive hearing loss are subtle. Recognizing them as soon as possible is essential to slow down the progression of hearing loss or other health problems related to hearing loss. However, if you’re not sure what the signs are, you can’t recognize them. You may be suffering from hearing loss if you have any of these eight barely noticeable signs.

1. Ears Ringing

Okay, this isn’t really a subtle sign, but it is something people tend to ignore unless it’s distracting. Tinnitus, the medical term for the ringing, is a typical sign of hearing loss.

The ringing can be periodic and only act up when triggered. Maybe the ringing only occurs when your tired or when you first get up for instance.

It’s crucial that you don’t ignore tinnitus because it is a symptom that something is going on with your body. Besides hearing loss, tinnitus can be caused by high blood pressure, trauma, or a circulatory problem. If you want to know for certain, you will need to consult your doctor.

2. You Dread Talking on The Phone

It’s not hard to make excuses for phone problems like:

  • My phone is out dated.
  • I dropped my phone in water or on the ground.
  • It’s a new phone, and I’m just not used to it yet.

If you hate using the phone consider the reasons why. Get someone else to test the phone for you if the volume is up and you still don’t hear it. If they can hear the conversation and you can’t, your ears are the issue.

3. It Seems Like Everyone Mumbles Now

Lately, it’s not only your kids, but also your neighbor, the news anchor, and even your spouse that have started to mumble to you. It’s difficult to believe that everyone in your life suddenly has poor enunciation.

The most likely answer is the way you hear words is changing. One of the first signs that your hearing is changing is when talking sounds like mumbling and consonants such as “S” and “T” drop off.

4. What Did You Say?

Only when someone calls you out for saying “what?” a lot do you begin to realize that you can’t hear conversations as well anymore. Usually, the first to notice you have hearing loss are people close to you like coworkers or family members. If someone comments on it, pay attention.

5. Some People You Hear Fine But Others Not so Much

Maybe when you are having a chat with your neighbor everything sounds fine but when his wife joins in you can’t understand a word. It’s a common sign of sensorineural hearing loss or damage to the nerves that send electrical messages to the brain.

Her voice is higher pitched, and that’s why it’s not as clear. You might have the same issue with your grandchild or daughter. Even when you are in normal situations, something as simple as trying to hear the sound of an alarm clock ar a microwave can make things complicated. Those tones are high pitched, also.

6. Going Out Used to be a Lot More Fun

Again, there are those people who mumble, and that’s not fun. Also, being in noisy places makes comprehending what people say a big challenge. Something as routine as the AC popping on during dinner or the sound of people chatting around you makes it impossible to hear anything.

7. You Never Used to Feel This Tired

Battling to understand words is exhausting. You are more exhausted than usual because your brain is working harder to process what it hears. You might even observe changes in your other senses. If your brain is utilizing 110 percent of its time and energy to comprehend words, what’s left for your eyesight or balance? If your last eye test was okay, then the next thing to get checked is your hearing.

8. You Can’t Hear The TV

Rather than accusing the service provider when you have to keep cranking the TV up, think about getting a hearing test. When you have loss of hearing it can be difficult to hear dialog. For instance, when the background music is playing, it makes everything sound confusing. And don’t even mention the AC, ceiling fan or other things in the room. If the volume keeps going up, then your hearing may be faltering.

The good news is all you need to do to know for certain is a professional hearing examination. Hearing aids should get things back to normal if it turns out that you have a hearing problem.