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Hearing loss is one of the most common health conditions in America. In fact, over 50 million Americans have at least mild hearing loss. So, if you are one of them you are not alone. Nonetheless, the knowledge that your ears aren’t working as they should can be quite scary.

While you may be tempted to ignore it and tell yourself that things are OK, this is the worst thing you can do. The sooner you act, the sooner you can restore your quality of life. Here’s what you should do to regain control of the situation.

Book an examination

Sounds obvious, right? But millions of people fail to get a professional opinion or diagnosis. Hearing loss can be categorized as mild, moderate, severe, or profound. Meanwhile, it can be rooted by many different sources. Only an audiologist will give you the right answers.

Booking a test will put you in control of the situation. For the best results, though, you should also familiarize yourself with what to expect. Learn more about pure-tone testing, and it will remove the fear factor. Better still, it’ll allow you to actually understand the results you are given. Ambiguity is the last thing you need.

If your hearing is particularly bad, ask a friend to attend with you. This way, they can fill you in with any points that you missed during the tests and consultations.

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Use assistive hearing tech

Assuming that hearing loss is detected, it is likely that hearing aids will be prescribed. Therefore, it’s worth finding out the difference between ITE, BTE, and RIC models. If those terms have thrown you a little, that’s an extra incentive to do your research.

Again, the right audiologist will guide you through the process but it helps to have a prior knowledge. Hearing aids aren’t the only items that may be worn to restore your hearing. Various Hearing Assistive Technologies (HATS) can be used to improve TV watching or help you hear the radio, doorbell, etc.

Technologies used to support people with reduced hearing have evolved at a rapid rate. Make the most of them, and the impact on your life will be smaller.

Protect yourself against further damage

Catching your hearing loss at an early stage gives you the best shot at containing the damage. By preventing, or at least slowing the regression, your quality of life will be better. There are several simple steps that can help you achieve this goal.

First and foremost, you should wear the right ear defense tools in the appropriate situations. If you work in music or on a construction site, for example, ear defenders reduce the impact of noise exposure. Meanwhile, you should stop bad habits, such as poking Q=tips into the ear for cleaning.

Prevention is the best form of protection, especially when trying to stop further problems. Better still, this care can give you a foundation to attempt reversals.

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Live a better lifestyle

Living a better lifestyle certainly won’t cure poor hearing. However, there are suggestions that it can make the impacts of hearing loss feel slightly less telling. After all, it’s not just about the ears. Hearing comes as a result of soundwaves sending information to the brain.

Therefore, keeping your body in mind in good general health can promote an improvement. A little exercise, healthy eating, and a conscious effort to boost your mental wellbeing are all valid. Whether you try to implement several changes at once or master one step at a time is up to you.

Even if the impacts on your hearing are minimal, the overall health rewards are telling. And it will allow you to place more focus on fighting this particular battle.

Prepare for life with hearing loss

The harsh reality is that most people who experience hearing loss must learn to live with it. Moreover, many of them will find that their hearing worsens. So, even if your life isn’t massively burdened right now. It might be a good idea to prepare for future problems.

You can learn the basics of sign language online or think about attending classes. Meanwhile, speaking to communities of deaf people or people with severe hearing loss can offer telling insight. They have been in your shoes, meaning they’ll understand your fears. They’ll also provide valuable tips.

Simply knowing that you are not alone in this battle can make a world of difference. For the sake of your immediate and future wellbeing, it may be the best step of all.