Depending on your age, you may find that you take your hearing for granted. As you get older, hearing tests become a key part of your regular medical checks. If you're over the age of 60 and you've yet to have a test, now's the time to start. Otherwise, you may need to look out for certain signs that indicate the need to have one.
Keeping up with the conversation makes you tired
Loss of hearing is usually a slow process, which means you may not notice significant changes as your brain gradually adapts to them. However, there does come a point when you can no longer compensate for poor hearing. Feeling tired after trying to follow a conversation is one sign that your hearing is failing. As your ears strain to pick up the conversation, you may experience frustration that's emotionally wearing or headaches that make you want to lie down. If this happens, you may need to see an audiologist for a test.
You're cranking up the volume
Whether you're driving along in the car and listening to music or trying to enjoy a movie at home, if you're turning the volume up so high others are starting to complain, now's the time to have a test. This is especially true if increasing the volume only results in noises that are louder rather than clearer. If you currently wear a hearing aid, bear in mind that increasing the volume or hearing unclear sounds can indicate the need for hearing aid repair.
Physical signs that a hearing test is necessary
Your ears and how you process sounds aren't the only indicators that your hearing is suffering. If you're hearing a high-pitched sound that won't go away, you're experiencing something called tinnitus, which warrants testing. As your ears play a big role in your balance, feeling dizzy and struggling to confidently stay upright are signs too. Finally, ear discharge, severe ear pain that won't go away, and head trauma also indicate the need for testing. If you're unsure, you can always talk to your GP, who will perform a basic test to assess whether you need something more in-depth.
Hearing tests are quick and non-invasive, which means you'll benefit from a speedy insight into what's happening in your ears. In addition to indicating whether you need a hearing aid, they can flag issues such as ear infections and damaged ear drums. After having one test, you may find you need to repeat it every few years, just to ensure your audiologist detects any changes.