Hearing Health Blog

female professional struggling with conversation in the office.

Your workplace has chosen to encourage teamwork and cooperation by opening up the office floor plan. But this new setup has become a struggle for you. It’s because the increased noise is making it difficult to follow along with conversation and not because you miss the privacy of cubical walls.

The inability to follow along with conversations in loud settings frequently acts as an early indicator of hearing loss, despite conventional hearing exams yielding normal results. You still may have trouble discerning conversations even with “Normal” hearing.

Considerable brain power is required to undertake the complex task of speech comprehension. Distinguishing speech from background noise and focusing on specific voices amongst a cacophony of sounds requires optimal hearing abilities.

As hearing begins to decline, the brain encounters difficulties in isolating and processing speech signals amidst competing sounds. Because of this, it becomes mentally fatiguing to be in noisy environments like restaurants and busy offices.

Identifying hearing loss when it’s in its early stages

Early indications of hearing loss manifest in various ways:

  • The brain needs to work extra hard to comprehend speech leading to increased mental tiredness.
  • Distraction and reduced engagement in social interactions.
  • When in noisy settings, conversations are hard to make out.

Testing for hearing loss

Detecting such challenges can be challenging, particularly when conventional diagnostics indicate normal hearing. However, researchers are looking at innovative tests to identify early stages of hearing loss:

  • The Eye Test: A special set of glasses is used in this test. These glasses can keep track of the movement and dilation of your pupils. If you’re concentrating a little harder than usual your pupils will react in a particular way. But it could be an indication that you’re straining to hear if this happens in a noisy setting.
  • Monitoring Electrical Signals: In this test, a device tracks the electrical EEG signals sent by your ears to your brain. If these signals change in a particular way while you’re in a crowded or noisy setting, that could be a firm indication of some issues with your hearing.

These tests, in conjunction with personal observations, aim to identify hearing problems at their nascent phases, aiding early intervention.

What are the benefits of early detection?

There are two significant advantages to early detection.

  • It reduces frustration by providing clarity about the challenges of being in settings like open office plans.
  • Addressing hearing loss quickly prevents cognitive decline related to untreated hearing impairments.

If you’re experiencing difficulty following conversations despite “normal” hearing, consider seeking a professional evaluation.

Total mental function and auditory health will be improved by early detection. Schedule a hearing exam today and explore options right for you.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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