Hearing loss is common and can occur in one or both of your ears, ranging from mild to profound. There are many causes, and it affects anyone at any age. However, it is more common in people older than 60.
Its impact on your daily life varies, but it’s undeniable. Regardless of your age, it’s essential to have the ability to hear correctly. Today, advances in technology like headphones, earphones, or earbuds can negatively impact your hearing ability when misused.
Fortunately, technology also has innovative tools to recognize hearing loss and its intensity. Spending a few moments on a simple test such as the Phonak online hearing test can assess your suspect hearing impairment and indicate if you have a problem that needs further professional examination.
Signs You Need a Hearing Test
Hearing loss can be subtle and occur to anyone. You may not even notice it before your friends and family. Some signs that you should have your hearing tested include if you:
- Find yourself turning up the volume of your radio or television more frequently
- Are told that you often speak loudly
- Often ask others around you to repeat themselves
- Frequently miss words or parts of a sentence and therefore reluctant to respond
- Often need to watch people when they talk
- Concentrate more when listening to conversations
- Increasingly find it hard to communicate with others
- Fail to hear the alarm go off or telephone ring
- You notice difficulty hearing voices in noisy environments
The Dangers of Untreated Hearing Loss
Hearing loss takes a toll on you and has far-reaching implications on your quality of life and those close to you. Untreated hearing loss impacts your health and overall well-being. Research indicates that people suffering from hearing loss have higher social isolation rates, depression, and cognitive decline. If you suffer from hearing loss, you also face a higher risk of dangerous trips, falls, and accidents.
Types of Hearing Loss
The three leading types of hearing loss include:
- Sensorineural: It’s the most common of the three, and it is permanent. It occurs due to several varied reasons and conditions that lead to the damage of tiny hair-like cells in the auditory nerve or the inner ear. The auditory nerve carries essential information about the pitch, loudness, and other meaning of sounds to your brain. It can result in difficulty understanding speech or sound despite how loud it is.
- Conductive: It occurs due to mechanical problems in the middle or outer ear or an obstruction in the ear canal, such as earwax blocking sound from getting to the eardrum. While it can be permanent, it’s more often temporary and medically treatable.
- Mixed hearing loss: It’s when you have both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
What are Online Hearing Tests?
Online hearing tests are self-administered to determine whether you possibly have a hearing problem. It’s advisable to follow up with a professional check-up if you may have a problem.
Are Online Hearing Tests Accurate?
An online hearing test is accurate enough to give you an overview of your present hearing state. However, it cannot offer you a medical diagnosis or identify the specific root cause of your hearing loss. For such in-depth information, you need to consult an audiologist.
But a hearing test is a good enough place to start, especially if you are looking for an update on your current hearing ability. Additionally, irrespective of whether you have a diagnosed hearing loss, it is recommended to regularly check your hearing to note any changes and stay on top of things.
Test Your Hearing at Phonak
Phonak has a simple three-minute online hearing test that provides quick, useful feedback about your hearing. The site also has an audiologist finder if you want to find a hearing care professional near you. What’s more, Phonak offers hearing aids designed to help people with different hearing problems. Start the test here.