As we reach middle age, we may start to feel like the world belongs to the younger generation. We may feel isolated and cut off from what the world has become. The culture has changed. The technologies have changed. We don’t feel like we are up to speed, and we definitely don’t understand everything that is different than how it was twenty years ago. It can feel like we have suddenly woken up in a strange room, and we can’t join in because we missed what happened.

This same feeling may be generated when our hearing starts to become less reliable. The banter and conversation in the room with the whole family is starting to go over our heads. We can’t join in because we’re not really sure what the topic of conversation is. We don’t get the jokes, and we’re not really sure who is speaking to who. This can be terribly isolating. You end up saying nothing. You are no longer joining in. You can hear there is plenty going on and lots being said, but the clarity of it has faded. It’s like you suddenly can’t focus. You may even wonder if your mind has let you down.

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This image from Flickr.com

If you visit websites like exposinghearingaids.org, you can start to see that any hearing loss can be very serious. Its damaging effect can reach farther than just feeling isolated. You can become mentally ill from it, and you may be at risk of other serious health problems. It is essential you seek specialist advice as soon as you realise you may be starting to suffer some hearing loss. It doesn’t need to be a part of the aging process that you have to put up with. It can be treated, and it can be much improved. And yes, you may need a hearing aid to facilitate that, but nowadays they can be virtually impossible for anyone to notice.

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Hearing technologies are much improved today. Picture from Flickr

It is important you don’t put up with it or resign yourself to it being part of getting older. Your brain needs the regular stimulation of all the sounds we usually hear to function correctly. Your family need you to continue participating in banter and conversation. You need to be able to take in and process all the sounds around you to be able to keep up with what is going on. For your own peace of mind, it is important to get your hearing regularly checked.

We all enjoy being able to fully participate in conversations without having to ask someone to repeat themselves. It can be embarrassing and tedious to ask more than once, but almost impossible to carry a conversation on naturally if we haven’t understood completely. Perhaps most importantly, serious illnesses like heart disease and diabetes can cause the hearing loss. This is why it is important you must have your hearing checked regularly, to help rule out these problems. It might also stop your family giving you a hard time about your hearing! Turn down the TV a notch and see how that affects your understanding. If you have difficulty, now could be a good time to get a hearing test.