The Basics: Overview
If you are worried that you might have hearing loss, you aren’t alone. Many people lose their hearing slowly as they age.
- 1 in 4 Americans between ages 65 and 74 have a hearing problem.
- Almost 1 in 2 Americans over age 75 have a hearing problem.
Start by asking your doctor for a hearing test. Depending on your test results, your doctor may refer you to a hearing specialist.
Hearing problems are serious.
Hearing loss can be frustrating and even dangerous. If you have hearing loss, you may:
- Have trouble hearing doorbells or alarms
- Miss important directions or warnings
- Feel lonely or depressed
Hearing problems can get worse if they aren’t treated. That’s why it’s important to get your hearing checked.
If you find out you have a hearing problem, you can take steps to deal with it before it gets worse.
The Basics: Signs of Hearing Loss
How do I know if I have hearing loss?
- Do you often ask people to repeat themselves?
- Do you hear ringing in your ears?
- Do people say your TV is too loud?
- Do you have trouble hearing on the telephone?
- Do you have trouble hearing when there’s noise in the background?
If you answered yes to some of these questions, you may have hearing loss. Take this quiz to find out if you might have a hearing problem.
Learn more about hearing loss:
The Basics: Treatment
How is hearing loss treated?
There are many products that can help with hearing loss:
- Hearing aids you wear in or behind your ear
- Special phones that make sounds louder
- Tools to help you hear in places like a classroom or theater (called assistive listening devices)
- TVs that also show text (called closed captioning)
- Flashing lights to let you know when an alarm or doorbell is ringing
If you think you have hearing loss, start by seeing a doctor. Find out which treatment options are right for you.