In conversation with friends, you want to be courteous. You want your customers, colleagues, and boss to see that you’re completely engaged when you’re at work. You frequently find yourself needing family to repeat themselves because it was easier to tune out parts of the conversation that you couldn’t hear very well.
On conference calls you move in closer. You look for facial cues, listen for inflection, and pay close attention to body language. You read lips. And if that doesn’t work, you nod in understanding as if you heard everything.
Don’t fool yourself. You’re straining to keep up because you missed most of what was said. You might not recognize it, but years of progressive hearing loss can have you feeling cut off and frustrated, making projects at work and life at home needlessly overwhelming.
The ability for someone to hear is impacted by situational factors such as background sound, contending signals, room acoustics, and how acquainted they are with their surroundings, according to research. But for people who have hearing loss, these factors are made even more difficult.
Some hearing loss behaviors to look out for
Here are some habits to help you identify whether you are, in truth, fooling yourself into thinking hearing impairment is not impacting your professional and social interactions, or whether it’s simply the acoustics in the environment:
- Requesting that repeat themselves over and over again
- Pretending to understand, only to later ask others about what was said
- Having a difficult time hearing what others behind you are saying
- Feeling like people are mumbling and not talking clearly
- Missing what people are saying when on phone conversations
- Leaning in When people are talking and unconsciously cupping your hand over your ear
Hearing loss most likely didn’t take place overnight even though it could feel that way. The majority of people wait 7 years on average before accepting the problem and seeking help.
So if you’re noticing symptoms of hearing loss, you can be sure that it’s been occurring for some time undetected. Hearing loss is no joke so stop kidding yourself and make an appointment right away.