Signs of Hearing Loss
Because hearing loss often occurs gradually, it can be difficult to know if it is happening to you. Sometimes we recognize that our situation has changed, but we put off having it looked into, thinking things might improve on their own. If you notice any of the following signs of hearing loss in yourself or in a loved one, contact Sioux Falls Audiology today, and we’ll help get you back on the path to better communication:
- Straining to hear what others are saying
- Difficulties hearing the television, and finding yourself turning up the volume
- Difficulties hearing when background noise is present
- Constantly asking people to repeat what they’ve said
- Feeling like others mumble when they speak to you
- Asking others to fill in the details of conversations because you can’t quite catch what is being said
- Missing phone calls or visitors because you didn’t hear the doorbell or telephone ring
- Notice without reading lips, conversation is difficult
- No longer noticing the sound of rain falling, blinker in the car, leaves rustling, dogs barking, traffic, etc
- Avoiding social engagements because you are not able to understand what your friends are saying
- Constant ringing or buzzing/humming in your ears, even in a quiet environment
If you experience SUDDEN hearing loss, PAIN, DRAINAGE or any other abnormality of the ear, it is necessary to make an appointment with an audiologist immediately. Explain your signs of hearing loss to our patient care coordinator and she will schedule you for an appointment on an emergency basis.
Hearing loss is a condition that sneaks up on most individuals. With more than 30 million Americans in need of hearing devices and trends showing that the number is growing exponentially, it’s essential that individuals become aware of how hearing loss can affect them. At Sioux Falls Audiology Associates, thorough patient education is our primary goal. Even if hearing loss has been troubling you for years, it’s never too late to receive experienced care.
Our hearing tests include a detailed discussion of your current medical history. We take the time to determine how your symptoms are affecting your day to day life. A complete physical examination of your ear allows us to see if your ear canal is clear and healthy, or if there is an obstruction that’s causing your hearing loss. Using a series of audiometric tests, Dr. Norgaard uncovers which sounds you are able to clearly hear and what ranges of volumes or frequencies may present a challenge. She also assesses the type, source, and severity of your hearing loss.
We discuss all of our findings with you in an easy to comprehend manner, so you truly understand your own hearing loss. Dr. Norgaard prides herself on extensive patient education, and by the time your hearing test has concluded, you will be well-versed in your specific type of hearing loss and the best ways to treat it.
Risk factors of hearing loss:
- Malformation of outer, middle or inner ear structures
- Fluid in the middle ear
- Ear infection
- Poor Eustachian tube function
- Perforated eardrum
- Impacted earwax
- Exposure to loud noise
- Head trauma
- Virus or disease
- Autoimmune inner ear disease
- Aging (presbycusis)
- Some medications
What is Tinnitus?
Have you been experiencing ringing in your ears, even in a quiet room? You may have tinnitus. Tinnitus can cause low- or high-pitched ringing, or present itself as a whistling, buzzing, clicking, chirping, whooshing, hissing, cricket-like, etc. sound. It is a noise which only you can hear; it can be continuous or intermittent, vary in volume and occur in one or both ears.
Often, tinnitus is the result of a damaged cochlea, or inner ear, caused by extreme or cumulative noise exposure, injuries to the head/neck or ear infections. It may also be the first sign of hearing loss. Sometimes it can also be the result of an underlying medical condition and as such should be evaluated by an audiologist.
Tinnitus might seem harmless to someone who has no experience with it, but about 20% of the people who suffer from it find it irritating or debilitating. Tinnitus has been known to affect concentration and cause insomnia, anxiety or depression. While there is no cure for tinnitus at this time, it can be managed. We encourage you to contact us to set up an appointment to have your tinnitus addressed. We can help you develop coping skills to effectively manage the problem.
Hear. Better. Now.