29 May Myths and Misconceptions about Hearing Loss: Part 4
Myth: “If I did have a hearing loss, I would be the first to know”
Fact: Hearing loss can happen so gradually and the signs can be very subtle at first. We often start to adapt to overcome our hearing difficulties before we recognize that we are even having trouble hearing. A hearing test can help shed some light on your hearing status, and often the results of the test will be consistent with what you are experiencing in your everyday auditory life.
Myth: Most hearing problems can’t be helped.
Fact: Over 20 years ago, hearing aids were not able to help everyone. With today’s hearing aid technology, there is an option to help almost everyone hear better. Over 90% of the causes of hearing loss today are very responsive to the appropriate hearing aid technology.
Myth: Hearing loss means that you just need everything a little louder.
Fact: Hearing loss is not just about loudness. More often, hearing loss affects the clarity of speech by distorting the balance between the different pitches of speech, not the overall loudness of the speech signal. When hearing loss occurs, it is also more difficult to hear in more complex listening environments like noisy places. This is why a hearing aid does not just “turn everything up”; this would actually be detrimental to the listening abilities of a hearing impaired individual. Rather, a hearing aid amplifies each pitch selectively, and uses different technologies to aid the damaged auditory system in different environments.