How Hearing Changes with Age
Last night I went to a restaurant with my dad for dinner. My dad is 84 years old and needless to say, he's not as sharp as he once was when he was a younger man. He still drives and is able to take care of himself for now, but the one thing that keeps getting my attention is his hearing, or lack of hearing I should say.
More and more when I speak to him, especially in an open environment like a restaurant, he finds it harder to hear what I am saying to him and I'm sitting right across from him at a table. What happens to a person's hearing with age is what we will discuss in this issue.
One way hearing loss occurs is when the tiny hairs cells are damaged or die. Unfortunately, these cells do not grow back, so any hearing loss caused by hair cell damage is permanent.
One out of two adults over the age of 65 will experience some kind of hearing loss also known as presbycusis. It is a gradual process that occurs within your inner ear.
There are several factors that contribute to hearing loss such as health issues like diabetes, ear infections or high blood pressure. Certain medications like aspirin, chemotherapy and some forms of antibiotics. Exposure to loud sounds like gun fire, explosions and loud music. Sometimes it is genetic and it runs in the family. Studies have shown that smokers are more likely to experience hearing loss than non smokers.
Common signs of hearing loss when we get older are when other people's speech sound slurred or mumbled, trouble with high pitch sounds and having trouble understanding conversations when there is background noise (like my dad at a restaurant). If you are experiencing these types of symptoms, then you should consult a doctor or a specialist.
A couple of specialists to consider are an ENT (ears nose and throat) to see if there are reasons for your hearing loss besides your age and a audiologist to measure and tell how much hearing you have lost.
One of the main reasons why the ChairSpeaker was created in the first place was because the founding family of the company has had a history with hearing loss. They took a very proactive, hands on approach to tackle this problem and have decided to share their solutions to help others with similar issues.
I even got a ChairSpeaker for my dad and not to sound biased in any way, it has definitely helped him understand what is being said on the TV a lot more clearly.