Some signs are easier to overlook than others. Take, for example, the check engine light on your car. You know it means you need to get your car serviced, but it’s still getting you from A to B. Until one day, of course, it breaks down and you’re left stranded. Your hearing is unlikely to suddenly stop working altogether, but there are subtle signs that it may not be in such good shape. Ignoring them can mean that one day you’ll realize that you’re just not enjoying life the way you used to. So what exactly are those signs?

Here are a few of the most common signs of a hearing loss that you can look out for:

Difficulty hearing women, children, and consonant sounds

Women and children usually speak in higher tones. Consonants, when spoken, are also at the higher end of sound frequencies. As hearing high-frequency sounds becomes harder with a hearing loss, women and children become more of a challenge to understand and consonants sounds are increasingly missed.


Difficulty hearing in noisy environments

Following a conversation when there is a lot of background noise is much harder with a hearing loss, whether that noise is music blaring or other conversations going on.


Experiencing headaches more often

Hearing loss means the brain has to work much harder to piece together the sounds it does receive from your ears. This can result in headaches becoming a more frequent occurrence.


Feeling increasingly tired

The stress of not being able to follow conversations, getting into misunderstandings more often, and experiencing headaches more frequently can all leave you feeling more tired and irritable at the end of the day.


Turning the volume up

One of the first signs of hearing ability diminishing is how loud the volume on the TV gets turned up. While you may not notice how high you’ve turned the volume up, those around you may find it is uncomfortably loud.  


Ear swapping when answering the phone

Talking on the phone can be especially difficult if you have a hearing loss. As a result, you may develop the habit of swapping the phone from one ear to the other in an attempt to hear the conversation better. If you are experiencing these signs of a hearing loss, it is time to get a hearing assessment by an Audiologist, a doctor specially trained to diagnose and treat hearing and balance disorders.


Get in touch with the experts

At Scottsdale Ear, Nose & Throat, our Audiologists have a wealth of expertise and experience in treating all kinds of hearing loss. All you need to do to take back control of your hearing health is call us at 480-684-1080 to book a hearing assessment at our state-of-the-art hearing care center.

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Dr. Debra L. Hamila, Au.D., CCC/A

Debra Hamila received her master’s degree in audiology from Cleveland State University and her Au.D. from Arizona School of Health Sciences and has been a practicing audiologist for more than 33 years. She has worked in a variety of ENT offices, hospital, and clinical settings.
    You don’t realise you’re walking with a rock in your shoe until you’re able to hear again – Regina’s Story

    Regina has suffered from hearing problems since she was an infant, recognized as regular chronic ear infections. And, as with unfortunate events, she has experienced a multitude of audiology catastrophes.

    It was many years before Regina crossed paths with Scottsdale Ear, Nose & Throat; where her lifetime of hearing problems was addressed effectively and treated with the delicate care that she desperately required.

    Regina’s journey began when she was taken to a regular paediatrician by her mother from a young age. Her ears were, what we describe as an audiologists recipe for disaster, ‘flushed out’.

    This dangerous procedure caused a nasty infection, which spread to her mastoid bone and, at the age of 15, she underwent a tympanoplasty mastoidectomy to stop the infection spreading. This only forbade her future struggles with hearing loss. 

    As with poor diagnosis, Regina was faced with another canaloplasty which didn’t work. Soon after, she received a BAHA, which is a cochlear implant in her skull that acts as a sound processor that detects sound and transforms it into vibrations. 

    However, suffering from a history of poor hearing care, she was unaware of the former issues her ear presented.

    By now, this would be described as any audiologists nightmare. But, we’re proud to have helped Regina on her road to optimum hearing and reconnect her to her loved ones.

    When she arrived at Scottsdale Ear, Nose & Throat it was evident that she was losing hearing on her right side. At this point, she was fitted with a ReSound hearing device, which provided the catalyst to a new and improved hearing.

    The first thing Regina noticed was the indefinite sound she had been making whilst emptying the dishwasher, completely unaware of the noise she was making!

    “I mean, the detail that I can hear now it’s like, Whoa, I didn’t realize I was making that much noise. I need to be quieter!”

    Treated with professional care, Regina received a comprehensive hearing assessment with Dr. Debra Hamila.

    “I just love, love, love Dr. Hamila, she is such a professional and loving person. I was so impressed with the office and what she did with the ReSound, I just love her.”

    Like many others, it takes years for people to realize they have a hearing problem. Regina described this moment as life-changing.

    “You don’t realise you’re walking with a rock in your shoe until you’re able to hear again. Especially now I’m a full-time Grammy Nanny, I can hear so much more and it has enriched my life incredibly.”

    What advice would you give to someone who is deliberating on taking the first step towards better hearing?

    “My advice to them would be to have a hearing test. Especially as we age our hearing goes down. It’s really unfortunate that people carry their pride and are not willing to learn to walk with the rock in their shoe. You don’t realise you’re waking with a rock in your shoe until you’re able to hear again.”

    Regina is one of many patients who has been impacted by our audiological services and we are proud to have been able to provide the tool towards better hearing and a lifetime of many more memories.