Don’t Suffer in Silence: 6 Signs of Hearing Loss

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The ability to process the world through sound is something that many of us take for granted – if we even think about it at all. But if you imagine a life without music, a loved one’s voice or the chirping of birds, you’ll realize just how important those ears can be.

Hearing loss is a reality for about 20 percent of Americans. It affects quality of life and communication. Knowing how to recognize it can mean the difference between sound and silence. Here are 6 signs of hearing loss to look out for:

1.You turn the volume (way) up.

Let’s say you’re watching the nightly news or listening to your favorite song, but it never seems to be loud enough. If you’re home alone, you might not realize how high the volume is. But if a friend or family member complains about the volume of your television or speakers, it might be a sign that something is awry with your ears.

2.Your ears are ringing.

A ringing or buzzing sound deep inside your ears may be a sign of hearing loss. Known as tinnitus, ringing can be a symptom of other inner ear disorders, such as Meniere’s Disease, but it’s also connected to hearing loss – and the actual ringing can differ depending on the cause.

3.Conversations sound like mumbling.

Whether you’re with family at Thanksgiving dinner or struggling to hear your best friend tell you about a new job, misunderstanding people in social situations is a frustrating experience. It’s often a sign that your hearing needs to be evaluated by a trained professional.

Furthermore, reliance on nonverbal cues such as facial expressions and body language during conversations to know what’s being said is also cause for concern.

4.You’ve been told you’re too loud.

Are friends and family telling you to hush over and over? If your voice is unusually loud during regular social situations and you’re embarrassed at how many people are telling you to be quiet, it’s probably time for a hearing test.

5.Household sounds are fading away.

Did a friend stop by and you didn’t hear the bell? Did the telephone ring and you completely missed the call? Failure to catch common household sounds is yet another sign your ears are not doing their job properly.

6.You avoid new or crowded situations.

If you once enjoyed parties and holiday festivities but lately it all overwhelms you, hearing loss may be to blame. The noisiness of crowds and the social pressure of conversing with new people can be quite unpleasant for those who cannot hear.

Recognize any of these signs? It’s probably time to see a professional.

A provider such as Coastal Hearing Center in Pawley’s Island, SC can fully evaluate the health of your auditory system. If any of these signs seem familiar, make an appointment and have your questions answered. Life is too short to suffer in silence.

For over 30 years, audiologist Rick Steighner of has been improving patients’ quality of life by restoring their hearing. His team at Coastal Hearing Center is committed to providing high-quality, friendly service and the best range of hearing aids on the market. The practice is currently offering rechargeable aids by Phonak, with other options on the horizon.

For more information about rechargeable hearing aids, visit or call (843) 979-3889.