We Don’t Know What We Can’t Hear

Most people have regular medical check-ups with the doctor and the dentist. We have our eyes tested every few years, but when it comes to the ears we just assume everything is ok.

The reason I am writing about this subject is because as we get older or if we work in noisy work places we tend to lose some hearing. This usually is gradual, so that we are not aware of it.

I know many people that suffer from hearing problems, some only slightly yet I see the frustration that their friends and families go through trying to get them to have a hearing test.

People from all walks of life and of all ages suffer from hearing loss but many do not think they have a problem.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • When you ask someone a question and they reply “I told you that already.”
  • You are at a party and everyone is talking and laughing and you are struggling to follow the conversation.
  • How come these days so many people mumble?
  • Some of your friends tell you that they think you have a hearing problem.
  • If you had a hearing problem, your doctor would tell you.
  • Only old people need hearing aids.
  • Hearing aids are only needed when you can’t hear.
  • People say they called but the doorbell didn’t ring. The telephone hasn’t rung all morning.
  • Some people with a hearing problem speak loudly and don’t realise it.

All this can be so stressful and annoying not only to the other people but to those of us that have a hearing problem, regardless of whether we think we have or not.

Many of us have either experienced some of the above or knew someone that has; it is very frustrating, to say the least.

Above I have listed a few of the myths and problems associated with the inability to hear properly.

The thing is that it is something that can be corrected if only we can accept the fact that, just maybe, we do have a hearing problem.

Have you experienced any of the above?  Has a friend or family member had to repeat what they have said?

As a little girl, I was often in trouble for daydreaming and not paying attention. Sometimes I was, but there were other times when I didn’t know anyone was speaking to me.

I was taught to look at people when I spoke to them. My parents would say to me “Nancy look at me when I am speaking to you.” When I looked at them I heard every word they said because I was paying attention.

When I was sixteen I went to an ear specialist, I had suffered from ear aches since I was a baby. He tested my hearing and told my Mum and me that I had a slight hearing problem. I told him that I could hear everything that was said to me.

He started to explain something to me and as he did he covered his mouth with a paper. I asked him to repeat what he said, then putting the paper down he told me again. This time I heard his every word although he did not raise his voice. He told me that I was hearing some things and lip reading others.

I don’t know when I started to lip read or even how it started, in fact, I didn’t know I did it at all until the doctor told me.

I went through my adult life knowing that I had a hearing problem. Then in my fifties, I had to have an ear operation, which left me with less hearing in my right ear.

It was then that I started wearing hearing aids. I felt very self-conscious and covered my ears with my hair so that people couldn’t see them.

At first, it was hard to adjust to wearing the hearing aids, I could hear better but there seemed to be a lot of background noises. I learned to regulate the hearing aids to suit the different situations.

Now my hair is cut short and I also wear earrings. When asked about the hearing aids I just smile and tell people how they have changed my life.

Not being able to hear properly causes a lot of problems in our everyday life.

It is hard to come to terms that we have difficulty hearing, even when family and friends tell us. This is because we don’t know what we can’t hear.

Sometimes our lack of hearing is nothing more than the lack of concentration. Often people listen partly to a conversation because they are more focused on how they will reply.

There are times when we have a hearing problem that can be rectified by visiting a doctor.

I love the sound of rain and rushing water. I love the sounds of the birds, the rustling leaves in the trees on a windy day. The sound of children playing; I love to listen to music.

All these pleasures I would miss out on if I didn’t wear hearing aids.

Live life to the fullest: If you have ever had to strain to listen, have your hearing checked out. Make the most of all the sounds of nature.

You will begin to enjoy being out with friends and enjoying those personal conversations with family.

If necessary wear your hearing aids with pride and enjoy all the wonderful sounds this world has to offer.

I know that I do.

– Nancy

5 thoughts on “We Don’t Know What We Can’t Hear

  1. What a wonderful, insightful message Nancy! I hope many people have the opportunity of reading your blogs…they inspire a joyful resilience for all of us to aim for!!


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