How to tell if your parents need a hearing test

Hearing loss is often a gradual process, so much so that the person experiencing it may not even realise they’re having problems. Commonly it’s those around them, like their children, partner or colleagues, who are the first to notice changes in their hearing.

It can be a sensitive subject to raise so it pays to feel confident. While a hearing test is the only sure way to know if someone is experiencing hearing loss, there are common signs you can look out for.

• Pumping up the volume
TV too loud? Radio causing a racket? Those with hearing loss often consistently turn up the volume to a level which is uncomfortable to others, which can lead to tensions in the household.

• Asking people to repeat themselves … regularly
Getting fed up of having to repeat everything you say? Being accused of mumbling? If it’s frustrating for you, imagine how frustrating it is for them. Some people may make excuses or blame others but, in reality, it’s a sign there could be a problem that needs to be investigated.

• Losing track of conversation
People with hearing loss often find it difficult to follow conversation as they may mishear or misinterpret all or part of what people are saying. It’s particularly common when chatting in a group or in environments with lots of background noise, like restaurants.

• Withdrawing from social events
Going out with friends and family is less fun when you’re straining to hear what people are saying, or you’re unable to follow conversations properly. It makes sense then that those with hearing loss may start shying away from those situations. This can lead to social isolation, depression and other mental health issues, so it’s important to find out what’s going on.

If you’re noticing any of these signs with your loved ones, it’s worth talking to them about a hearing test.

Unsure of how to broach the subject? Click here for some tips or call/live chat with Hearing Help to speak to an audiologist.

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