Hearing Loss, Know the Unmistakable Signs
The rock band AC/DC from Australia has overcome alcoholism, drug abuse, dementia and even their lead singer’s death in 1980. Despite having sold two hundred million albums around the world, they were, however, never able to conquer hearing loss due to age.
In 2016, doctors advised Brian Johnson, their front man, to immediately stop touring or risk losing his hearing permanently. This was stated by a press release in March. The loss of hearing was a result of a lifetime spent in front of giant amplifiers and car-racing without earplugs.
Brian Johnson is not alone. More than a third of people aged between 65 and seventy-four have hearing loss due to age to a greater or lesser degree. This is according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. For Americans of advanced age, this is the third most prominent issue, the first being heart diseases. As people age, the issue gets worse. In older adults, most loss of hearing is a result of being overly exposed to noise and the fact that ears simply don’t work as well. You are especially prone to this is you fall in certain groups.
Know All There Is to Know About Hearing Loss
There is still a big chance of hearing loss later in life for people with perfect hearing. Those who have Meniere’s disease, inner ear diseases and chronic ear infections have greater risks of hearing loss. In addition, people who are exposed to noise for prolonged periods of time due to recreation or occupation are especially at risk. This includes construction workers military veterans or those who have endured decades of band music at a stadium-level, such as the ban Brian Johnson.
Knowing All the Signs
Even if hearing loss related to age is permanent, the good news is that it can be treated. Plus, you can act fast and get help if you know exactly what to watch for.
Some of the earlier signs include feeling challenged in situations that involve regular listening, especially when other people don’t seem to have a hard time. If you need to struggle to listen to phone conversations, watch television at normal range or hear background noise, this might be an indication of the loss of hearing.
Other telltale signs include feeling frustrated that you can’t understand what other people are telling you and struggling at social settings. Do you feel that you might need to see a specialist? There are a few questionnaires you can access online to decide whether or not you need to see a doctor.
It is undeniably difficult to admit to experiencing the loss of hearing. It is equally hard to reveal to someone you love that they might be losing theirs. When you need to tell someone, carefully broach the topic and look out for behavior such as:
- When they ask you to repeat what you say over and over again
- When they turn up the volume level of the TV to maximum
- When they have a particularly hard time listening to others at a gathering
You may have perfect hearing at the moment. However later in life there is still a possibility of decline. For example, hearing loss didn’t become a real issue for 68-year old Johnson of AC/DC until his mid to late sixties.
Using earmuffs, earplugs and other devices for hearing protection is one way you can protect yourself from damage. This keeps a noisy environment safe for your ears. Activities like lawn mowing, sports events and concerts are especially notable. Use hearing protection for loud environments such as these.
It is also a good idea to know when to get a check-up for your ears. Most people are unaware or unwilling to address issues they may have about hearing loss. They may suspect something is up but at this point they have already missed out on social events and countless conversations. Visiting a hearing care center, otolaryngologist or audiologist will let you know whether you need a hearing device such as a hearing aid or not.
As for AC/DC, the rumor is that they don’t have a front man at the moment and are looking for a new lead singer. While he can bask in the comfort of millions of dollars and global adoration, none of it will enable him to gain back his hearing. Obviously, there are simply some things money can’t buy.