6 Signs You May Be Experiencing Age-Related Hearing Loss
September 18, 2023

Think your hearing’s just fine? You might want to listen up. 

The subtle slide into age-related hearing loss often goes unnoticed until it impacts your life in ways you never saw coming. It’s not just about asking people to repeat themselves; it’s about safeguarding your mental sharpness, your relationships, and even your physical well-being. 

Wondering if your ears–and brain– are trying to tell you something? Keep reading to discover the 6 undeniable signs you can’t afford to ignore.

1. Turning the TV Volume Up…and Up

Do you find yourself constantly reaching for the remote to turn the TV volume up? If family members are starting to comment that it’s too loud, but it sounds right to you, it’s time to pay attention.

This could be one of the earliest signs that your hearing is not what it used to be. And dismissing it could mean missing out on a chance to address the issue before it affects more than just your TV-watching experience.

While adjusting your TV’s volume might not seem like a big issue, it’s often just the tip of the iceberg. Conversations can also become challenging to follow.

Elderly couple cooking and conversing with their grandchildren

2. Misunderstanding Conversations

If you’re increasingly asking people to repeat themselves or frequently misunderstanding what they’re saying, it’s easy to blame it on them mumbling or on background noise. But the real issue might be closer to home–your ears.

Struggling to keep up with conversations, especially in noisy settings, isn’t just frustrating–it’s often an early warning sign that your hearing is not as sharp as it once was. Don’t brush it off; your ability to connect with others–and your own well-being–could be at stake.

But the struggle doesn’t just end at face-to-face conversations; phone calls also might become challenging.

Happy lady talking on the phone

3. Trouble Hearing on the Phone

If you find yourself straining to catch every word during phone calls, or perhaps avoiding them altogether because they’ve become too challenging, you might be dealing with more than just bad reception.

A drop in the clarity of phone conversations could be a subtle but telling sign that your hearing is declining. 

Another subtle sign might be a ringing in your ears that no one else can hear…

Elderly man holding his ears forward

4. Ringing or Buzzing in Your Ears

Do you hear a persistent ringing, buzzing, or hissing sound that seems to come from nowhere? No, you’re not imagining things. This is what’s known as tinnitus, and it’s closely related to hearing loss. 

This isn’t just a minor annoyance you can afford to ignore–it’s a red flag signaling that your ears might be having a hard time. If these phantom sounds are becoming a regular occurrence, it’s time to take it seriously as it could indicate underlying issues with your hearing.

Tinnitus can also be overwhelming to the point where you avoid social gatherings altogether.

A family event, elderly lady with white hair in the center

5. Avoiding Social Gatherings

Are you finding more reasons to decline invitations to social gatherings? If you’re bowing out because it’s hard to follow conversations or you’re self-conscious about asking people to speak up, it might be more than just nerves.

Avoiding social situations is a telling behavior often linked to hearing loss. Missing out on life’s important moments due to difficulty hearing isn’t just a personal loss–it can also strain relationships and negatively impact mental well-being. So if you’re dodging get-togethers altogether to avoid the struggle of communication, it’s a strong sign that your hearing might need a check-up.

If you find yourself avoiding social situations, it might be worth asking yourself why. Often, those closest to you are the first to notice these changes, even if you haven’t.

Older couple with their grandchildren

6. Your Family Is Concerned

It’s often easier for those around us to notice changes in our behavior before we do. If your family or close friends have expressed concerns about your hearing, it might be worth perking up your ears–literally.

Perhaps you’re not reacting to sounds like you used to, or perhaps you’re asking for them to repeat themselves more frequently. If your loved ones mention their observations about your hearing, know that they’re doing so out of love and care for your well-being. 

Their concerns are an early warning that it might be time to get your hearing checked. Ignoring these well-meaning cues could mean overlooking a crucial opportunity for early intervention. 

Here’s what you can do next.

Older gentleman and younger lady smiling, looking at phone

Don’t Ignore the Signs: What to do next

If you recognize any of these signs in yourself, don’t put off taking action. Hearing loss is not just about missing out on conversations–it can affect your brain’s health and your quality of life.

The good news? You can do something about it, and it doesn’t have to break the bank. Audien Hearing Aids are an affordable and easy-to-use solution. Starting at just $99 a pair, they offer a budget-friendly way to improve both your hearing and your overall well-being. And for a limited time, you can try Audien Hearing Aids Risk-Free for 45 days, so you can really experience the difference they make.

Early intervention can make all the difference for your future well-being, so act now. Click below to find out more about Audien Hearing Aids and see if they’re the right fit for you.


Note: This article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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Drew Sutton M.D.

Drew Sutton, MD is a board-certified otolaryngologist. He has extensive experience and training in sinus and respiratory diseases, ear and skull base surgery, and pulmonary disorders. He has served as a Clinical Instructor at Grady Hospital Emory University for more than 12 years.

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