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Hearing Loss: Common Symptoms and Solutions

By Sixty and Me November 08, 2015 Health and Fitness

You’re a baby boomer. You’re part of the most active and outstanding generation this nation has ever seen. Now, you’re either headed into or are already in your 60s – and you aren’t slowing down. But amidst all this activity you may have noticed some signs of aging.

As we age, we face many changes in our bodies. Some are cosmetic. Our skin loses its volume and our hair may gray.

One change we cannot see, but one that has a definite impact, is hearing loss.

Hard to Pronounce, Easy to Grasp

According to the National Institute of Aging, presbycusis (prez-bee-KYOO-sis) is a common type of hearing loss that comes on slowly as a person gets older.

It can run in families and affects hearing in both ears. The degree of hearing loss varies from person to person.

Are you starting to have trouble hearing someone on the phone? That could be an early sign of this type of hearing loss.

It’s Fairly Common

Hearing loss is probably more common than you think. According to the National Institutes of Health, approximately one in three people between the ages of 65 and 74 has hearing loss and nearly half of those older than 75 have difficulty hearing.

Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms of Hearing Loss

Though hearing loss is diagnosed by a trained professional, there are early indicators that you may detect on your own. According to the Mayo Clinic, it’s time to see a hearing care professional about hearing loss if you experience:

  • Muffled speech and other sounds
  • Difficulty understanding words, especially against background noise or in a crowd
  • Trouble hearing consonants
  • Frequently asking others to speak more slowly, clearly and loudly
  • Needing to turn up the volume of the television or radio
  • Withdrawal from conversations
  • Avoidance of some social settings

Left untreated, these symptoms of hearing loss can have a negative effect on all facets of your life, from your social life to your family life. Difficulty hearing can make anything challenging.

Fortunately, There Are Customized Solutions Available

If you’re worried that wearing a hearing aid is a clear sign of aging, remember that today’s hearing aids are discreet, close-fitting pieces. Long gone are the large hearing aids that whistle and buzz.

Hearing aids do not restore hearing, but rather amplify sounds so the user can hear them. Companies like Miracle-Ear provide hearing aids that are programmed specifically for hearing loss and are customized to the user. Miracle-Ear products come in a variety of styles and technology levels, for the consumer to find the best fit for their particular needs.

Hearing aids help keep you alert, aware and active, and can help keep up that baby boomer energy your generation is known for. After all, no one wants to miss out on all that life in your 60s has to offer.

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The Author

Sixty and Me is a community of over 500,000 women over 60 founded by Margaret Manning. Our editorial team publishes articles on lifestyle topics including fashion, dating, retirement and money.

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