In conversation with friends, you like to be polite. You want your customers, co-workers, and boss to recognize that you’re fully engaged when you’re at work. You frequently find yourself needing family to repeat themselves because it was easier to tune out parts of the conversation that you couldn’t hear very well.
You need to move in a little closer when you’re on zoom calls. You watch for facial hints, listen for inflection, and tune in to body language. You try to read people’s lips. And if that doesn’t work, you nod as if you heard everything.
Don’t fool yourself. You missed a lot of what was said, and you’re struggling to keep up. Life at home and tasks at work have become unjustifiably overwhelming and you are feeling aggravated and isolated due to years of progressive hearing loss.
According to some studies, situational factors such as room acoustics, background noise, contending signals, and situational awareness have a strong influence on how we hear. But for people who suffer from hearing loss, these factors are made even more challenging.
Some hearing loss behaviors to watch out for
There are some revealing behaviors that will alert you to whether you’re in denial about how your hearing loss is affecting your social and professional life:
- Asking others what you missed after pretending you heard what they were saying
- Cupping your ear with your hand or leaning in close to the person who is speaking without noticing it
- Repeatedly having to ask people to repeat themselves
- Finding it harder to hear over the phone
- Having a difficult time hearing what others behind you are saying
- Thinking people aren’t speaking clearly when all you seem to hear is mumbling
While it may feel like this crept up on you suddenly, more than likely your hearing loss didn’t happen overnight. The majority of people wait an average of 7 years before accepting the problem and seeking help.
So if you’re noticing symptoms of hearing loss, you can bet that it’s been occurring for some time undetected. Hearing loss is no joke so stop kidding yourself and make an appointment now.