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Birmingham, AL | ENT Specialists
A female ENT physician with red manicured nails places black headphones on a young woman, performing a hearing test.

How Often Should I Have My Hearing Tested?

Like getting your eyes checked or having a yearly checkup, including hearing tests in your wellness routine is important for staying healthy. Hearing loss, unlike vision that gets noticeably worse as we age, can sneak up slowly, making it easy to miss the warning signs. That’s why getting a baseline hearing test is key to catching hearing loss early and preventing it from worsening.

A baseline hearing test can best be thought of as a snapshot of your hearing health in real time. It gives ENT specialists a starting point to compare future tests against. This lets them see any changes in your hearing and allows you to address any problems early on when treatment works best.

At ExcelENT of Alabama, we offer complete hearing care and understand you might wonder how often you should get your hearing checked. Let’s explore how often based on your age and risk factors, but first, let’s delve into just how important baseline hearing tests are.

The Importance of Baseline Hearing Tests

Imagine experiencing a gradual decline in your vision over time. Without a baseline eye exam from your younger years, it becomes difficult to determine the extent of the change. The same principle applies to hearing. A baseline test serves as a reference point, allowing us to measure any future shifts in your hearing thresholds accurately.

Early detection of hearing loss allows for prompt intervention, potentially slowing down the progression and maximizing the benefits of treatment options like hearing aids. Early intervention can also improve your overall quality of life.

Studies have linked untreated hearing loss to social isolation and depression, as well as cognitive decline. Moreover, by establishing a baseline and scheduling regular follow-up tests, you’re taking a proactive step toward protecting your hearing health.

Frequency of Hearing Tests

Now that you know why a baseline hearing test is important, how often should you come back for follow-up checks? The good news is there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer! Different factors influence how frequently you should get your hearing tested.

Let’s break it down based on age and some everyday situations that can impact your hearing health. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) provides these general guidelines to help you navigate this:

  • Adults Aged 18-40: Every 3-5 years, especially if you have a history of ear infections or noise exposure.
  • Adults Aged 40-50: Every 2-3 years, particularly if you work in noisy environments or attend frequent loud concerts.
  • Adults Over 60: Annual hearing tests are highly recommended due to the increased prevalence of age-related hearing loss (presbycusis).

Risk Factors for Hearing Loss Beyond Age

While age is certainly a significant factor in hearing loss, there are several other conditions that can increase your risk. Here are five things to consider:

  • Occupational Noise Exposure: Working in environments with loud sounds, such as construction sites, factories, or music venues, can damage one’s hearing over time.
  • Recreational Noise Exposure: Regularly listening to music at high volumes, such as at concerts or with headphones, can contribute to hearing loss.
  • Ototoxic Medications: Certain medications can have ototoxic side effects, meaning they can damage the hair cells in the inner ear that are responsible for hearing.
  • Medical Conditions: Diabetes, high blood pressure, and head injuries can all contribute to hearing loss.
  • Family History: People with a family history of hearing loss may be at a higher risk.

Are You Having Trouble Hearing?

If you’re experiencing common signs of hearing loss, such as difficulty understanding speech or ringing or buzzing in your ears, take a few minutes to complete our quick hearing loss quiz. This confidential assessment can determine if a comprehensive hearing evaluation is right for you.

Remember, early detection is crucial to protecting your hearing! Request an appointment today for a thorough evaluation and personalized hearing care plan from ExcelENT.

Prioritize Your Hearing Health at ExcelENT of Alabama

ExcelENT of Alabama provides exceptional, patient-centered care for all your hearing needs. Our team is committed to helping you achieve optimal hearing health through a wide range of hearing loss prevention services, including:

We understand that hearing loss can be daunting, but we are here to support you every step of the way. Our compassionate team will address your concerns, answer your questions, and work with you to develop a personalized hearing care plan that ensures a lifetime of better hearing.

Visit A Licensed ENT in Alabama and Protect Your Hearing 

Request a hearing test with ExcelENT today and take a proactive step towards preventing hearing loss. You can also easily schedule an appointment by calling us directly at (205) 386-6453.

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