Whilst it is impossible to predict with precision who will experience hearing loss in life, there are a number of factors that can contribute to hearing loss and make its incidence more likely – do any of these seem familiar?
Hearing loss is an inevitable part of ageing for many as the tiny sensory hair cells in the ear are damaged by everyday wear and tear. Over 50% of people over the age of 60 are thought to be experiencing hearing loss so as you get older your chance of hearing loss increases.
Exposure to Noise
Hearing loss can also be brought on, or brought on earlier by exposure to loud or prolonged noise. If you find yourself in any of the following noisy environments you are more likely to develop the symptoms of hearing loss in later life:
- Working in noisy conditions such as factories without hearing protection
- Listening to loud music using earphones or in enclosed spaced (like the car) or attending music concerts
- Hobbies including shooting, hunting or motor racing
Hereditary / Genetic causes
Hearing loss can be caused by hereditary conditions so, if your parents have had a hearing loss, there may be a greater chance you will too. Some genetic diseases can actually cause hearing loss, and can be passed down to family members. If family members do have hearing impairments, you should get your own hearing checked out to catch any hearing loss early.
There is no way of predicting exactly if and when you may get a hearing loss if but there are a few telltale signs to look out for. These include:
- Asking others to repeat themselves
- Turning up the volume of the TV louder than is comfortable for others
- Having difficulty in conversations with more than one person
- Finding it hard to hear in noisy environments such as restaurants or busy meeting areas
If you suffer any of these symptoms, even if they seem relatively mild, don’t assume they will go away. Attending a free hearing test at your local Boots hearingcare centre could put your mind at rest, and if necessary provide you with details of hearing solutions that could help you to hear and feel better.0