CLARITY HEARING SOLUTIONS
Hearing loss is an invisible health issue that many tend to ignore.
“I’m always trying to figure out what’s really going on. Always having to fill in the gaps, but never getting all the details. It’s like trying to do a jigsaw when I don’t even know what the picture is, and I’m missing one of the vital middle pieces.”
The above quote is from Melbourne author Chrissie Perry’s award-winning book Whisper. I think it captures so vividly the distress we find many of our patients feel when they come to us with hearing loss.
We usually get checked and prodded for visible disorders quickly. Your sight’s not as good as it used to be, we go to the optometrist. That blemish looking slightly different, off to the skin clinic. That pain in your lower back, off to the physio. But hearing we tend to ignore for as long as we can – usually until our family intervenes and insists we get our hearing checked.
But what have we missed in the meantime and what could we have done to prevent the disorder getting worse?
More and more research supports early intervention for hearing loss, for adults and children as well.
In adults, hearing loss can lead to social isolation, depression and there’s potentially a link to dementia as well. As hearing diminishes people tend to start to withdraw from conversations and social activity as it becomes too difficult to keep pace with conversations. This affects not only the sufferer of hearing loss but their friends and family who become frustrated with the inability of the person to hear, participate and respond appropriately.
It’s not just the health effects we need to be concerned about. The financial costs affect individuals and communities as well. The World Health Organisation has found that people with untreated hearing loss earn, on average, less than people with normal hearing.
Undiagnosed and untreated hearing loss in children can lead to delays in speech development and ongoing learning disorders potentially affecting them for the rest of their lives.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you may have a hearing loss, and a hearing evaluation with a registered and fully qualified audiologist is recommended:
• Difficulty hearing in background noise
• Difficulty understanding women’s and
• “I hear fine, but it sounds like people mumble!”
• Speech sounds are muffled
• Turning the TV or radio louder than others
• Asking people to repeat; saying “huh” or
• Tinnitus or ringing in the ears
• Ears feel stopped-up
• Doesn’t respond to name being called
• Doesn’t turn to locate sounds after 6 months of age
• Doesn’t respond when back is turned or from across the room
• Speech and language is delayed
If you are diagnosed with hearing loss, it’s great to know that there are now many options in treatment and in hearing devices to assist. We carry a full range of devices from all manufacturers including invisible, extended wear Lyric hearing aids right through to cochlear implants for those who are profoundly deaf.
Missing a piece in a jigsaw puzzle is frustrating. Missing pieces of life and activities around you is devastating. If you suspect hearing loss, don’t delay talking to someone about your options.