Archelle Georgiou, MD answers some of your most frequently asked questions regarding hearing loss, treatment and helping loved ones with hearing loss.
Signs and effects of hearing loss
How can I avoid hearing loss?
How can I avoid hearing loss? We don’t know how to prevent age related hearing loss, but we do know how you can protect yourself against noise induced hearing loss by avoiding sounds that are too loud and last too long.
How can I tell if I have hearing loss?
How can I tell if I have hearing loss? Common symptoms of hearing loss are continuous turning up the volume on their TV, radio or listening device. In conversations you find yourself asking people to repeat themself and getting frustrated that everyone around you is mumbling, you may want to get tested if you find yourself in these situations.
What are the changes that I’ll get hearing loss?
What are the chances that I’ll get hearing loss? The risk of hearing loss starts as early as age 30 and it doubles every 10 years. By the age of 65, one in three people have hearing loss.
Hearing loss help
I think I have hearing loss – should I talk to my doctor?
I think I have hearing loss – should I talk to my doctor? You should talk to your doctor if you have concerns of hearing loss. Provide your doctor with a few examples of situations where you think you have a hearing loss. Tell them you want a formal comprehensive hearing evaluation.
What should I do if I have hearing loss?
What should I do if I have hearing loss? If you have hearing loss get it treated. Don’t just try to get by until it gets real bad. Just like a pair of glasses for a mild vision loss, you should get your hearing treated even if mild so you can have the best hearing possible.
Who should I see if I have hearing loss?
Who should I see if I have hearing loss? If you have hearing loss make sure you see a hearing healthcare professional, such as an audiologist, hearing aid specialist or an ENT. Make sure you get the right device for you by having that professional provide all of your options.
Help a loved one
How do I talk to my family or friend about their hearing loss?
How do I talk to my family or friend about their hearing loss? Talking to someone about their potential hearing loss can be a delicate subject. If you have a conversation with someone on this, pick the right time and place. GIve examples of situations where you think they struggled to hear you. The goal is for them to take the first step. If they don’t want to go to a hearing professional right away, have them take the hearing test on starkey.com
How do I convince my loved one to do something about their hearing loss?
How do I convince my loved one to do something about their hearing loss? Convincing someone to do something about their hearing loss can be a difficult conversation. Focus on telling them how important it is to communicate effectively. 95% of the time hearing loss can be treated.
How do I know if I have tinnitus?
How do I know if I have tinnitus? Tinnitus is the perception of ringing, buzzing, or hissing in the ears and symptoms are different for each person. Tinnitus is a symptom not a diagnosis. It’s very important to get diagnosed by a hearing professional.
I have tinnitus – what should I do?
I have tinnitus – what should I do? There is no cure for tinnitus but there are approaches that help bring some relief. Protocols are tailored to each person and the first step is to see a hearing profession.
Dr. Georgiou provides her expert opinion on common myths about hearing loss and hearing aids.
I don’t have hearing loss
I hear fine, it’s other people mumbling
I hear fine, it’s other people mumbling Complaining that other people are mumbling is the most common complaint that people with hearing loss have. It is one of the earliest symptoms. If more than one person is mumbling in your life, take a look at yourself, you need your hearing evaluated.
My hearing is normal for my age
My hearing is normal for my age There are many age related conditions, but that doesn’t mean that they are normal and that you shouldn’t treat them. Treating hearing loss will improve the quality of your life.
My doctor didn’t recommend hearing aids
My doctor didn’t recommend hearing aids Your doctor may not have diagnosed hearing loss. Only 14% of doctors even screen for hearing loss and even when they do, they may not even detect you have a mild hearing loss. See a hearing profession if you have any question in your mind that you have a hearing loss.
Hearing loss isn’t serious
A little bit of hearing loss is no big deal
A little bit of hearing loss is no big deal. Some people with a little bit of hearing loss don’t notice a big problem, but others can notice a significant improvement in their hearing with hearing aids.
Who cares if I can’t hear great, it’s only affecting me
Who cares if I can’t hear great, it’s only affecting me Hearing loss affects you and everyone around you, especially people in your family. You may experience being excluded from the conversations. Not hearing well can create conflict with your loved ones.
I’ll just wait until my hearing loss is really bad
I’ll just wait until my hearing loss is bad. On average people wait 7 years to get their hearing addressed. In the meantime, this affects all aspects of your life including work life, social life, relationships. Why wait 7 years to be included in all of that?
Hearing aids won’t help
I know someone that wears hearing aids and they don’t help them
I know someone that wears hearing aids and they don’t help them. You don’t know what the situation was for the person that claims that hearing aids don’t help them. If you have questions that you may have a hearing loss, get your hearing evaluated by a hearing professional.
Hearing aids won’t help me hear better, will they?
Hearing aids won’t help me hear better, will they? Hearing aids will help you hear better. The hearing aids amplify the sound, like turning up the volume.
I’m too old – hearing aids won’t help
I’m too old – hearing aids won’t help. Hearing aids can help at any age. It is important to treat hearing loss because hearing loss is linked to other health conditions like dementia and depression to even increase the risk of falling.
Hearing aids are complicated
If hearing aids keep amplifying sounds… can’t they further damage my hearing?
If hearing aids keep amplifying sounds…can’t they further damage my hearing? A hearing aid that fits you will not damage your hearing. The hearing aids are set to not get too loud to damage your hearing.
Don’t hearing aids just make everything louder?
Don’t hearing aids just make everything louder? Hearing aids are amplifiers. Today’s technology is so smart that it allows you to hear what you want to hear.
I’ve heard hearing aids are hard to operate and adjust
I’ve heard hearing aids are hard to operate and adjust. Today’s hearing aids are so easy to wear and adjust. When you put them on, they hear for you. Technology is so smart that they automatically adjust for you.
I don’t know where to go get help for my hearing loss
I don’t know where to go to get help for my hearing loss. If you think you have hearing loss it is recommended to go to a hearing aid specialist who is trained in this profession.
Wearing hearing aids will make me look old
Wearing hearing aids will make me look old. Hearing aids are barely visible to anyone except you. You will look much older when you can’t hear the conversation and ask people to repeat themselves and that they mumble.
Hearing aids are too expensive
Hearing aids are too expensive Hearing aids can be expensive but think about the value of hearing all conversations and hearing subtle sounds for safety to protect yourself.