During their first appointment at Cornerstone Audiology, many patients ask their doctor, “But what does hearing loss sound like!?” It’s a simple question. But in truth, it will be different for each person and will depend on their lifestyle choices and specific hearing condition. These are some of the ways that you can experience a hearing loss.

Ringing In Your Ears

One of the symptoms is a ringing in your ears, known as tinnitus, which often matches the pitch of the sounds that you’re struggling to hear. This can occur in both ears or just one, and sometimes it will go away and then return at different points in the day. After someone has witnessed a very loud noise, for example, they may have tinnitus for a week before it slowly disappears. But they could still have permanent damage to their auditory system, with a hearing loss only becoming obvious many years later.

Muffled Sounds

Another obvious hearing loss symptom is when someone finds that sounds appear muffled, as though they’re experiencing the world while wearing ear protection.
Often, patients will tell doctors, “I can hear just fine, but a lot of people I talk to mumble.” In most cases, it’s the patient’s hearing that is the problem, not the clarity of others’ words and phrases. It’s important to recognize this clue as soon as possible, as it can sometimes lead people to feel annoyed, frustrated, and anxious.

Accents And Voices

It’s also not uncommon for people with a hearing loss to have trouble understanding those with different accents and tones of voice. If you’re a man, for example, you might have difficulty understanding women and children, who generally speak in a higher pitch. This may be exacerbated in different situations and environments such as a crowded room in a restaurant or an echoey gymnasium. You may also struggle to follow those speaking on the television that are from different parts of the country, depending on their particular dialect.

Why Should I Seek Help?

It’s essential to see an audiologist as soon as possible if you suspect a hearing loss, because the longer you wait, the worse your condition may become. A person with an untreated hearing loss can get what’s called auditory deprivation – which can make amplification treatments less effective. On the contrary, those that recognize the signs of an issue early can effectively manage and preserve their hearing well into the future. But whenever you first talk to an audiologist, they’ll work hard to find the best hearing solution possible for you.

What If I’m Concerned?

If you’re worried that you might be experiencing the early stages of hearing loss, it’s crucial to book an appointment with an audiologist as soon as possible. At Cornerstone Audiology, our doctors provide full hearing evaluations, meaning they can accurately diagnose your condition. If you require hearing treatments, they can offer open, honest advice about what will best manage or cure your problem.

Are you experiencing hearing loss symptoms or know someone who is? Request a callback now, and a member of the Cornerstone Audiology team will be able to assist you today!

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Dr. Deanna Wann, Au.D., CCC-A Doctor of Audiology

Dr. Deanna Wann received her bachelor’s degree in speech-language and hearing sciences and her doctorate in audiology at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC). She is a member of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA). While in graduate school, Dr. Wann participated in the TTUHSC Medical Missions Team with the School of Nursing and the School of Medicine students to provide hearing screenings as part of a health screening in Nicaraguan villages and special needs schools.