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Chris Packham reveals how diving accident caused hearing loss

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Many people with hearing loss won’t realise it until a number of years later. You’re more likely to develop hearing loss as you get older. However, as time has progressed, so has the help and support available for patients.

During the past week, glyburide or glibenclamide campaign groups and organisations around the globe have been raising awareness for World Hearing Day.

One of the conditions which experts were looking to increase the conversation around was hearing loss.

While hearing loss is common, particularly in older people, the signs of it can sometimes be less obvious to look out for.

Katie Ogden is a Training Manager for ReSound, in North-West Europe – part of The GN Group, which labels itself as the global leader in intelligent audio solutions.

She told Express.co.uk of three key symptoms to look out for which could indicate hearing loss in friends or family members.

1.) Changing the TV volume level

Ms Ogden said the “TV is a huge indication” of whether someone is developing hearing loss.

She said: “If that [TV] is turned up louder for one member of the household more than others would like, then a hearing assessment would be a good idea.”

2.) Asking for people to repeat themselves

Although this is not necessarily an indication of permanent hearing loss, you should still be mindful of when someone is constantly asking you to repeat yourself.

In fact, there could be other explanations for why this pattern in behaviour has emerged but regardless you should still look to be seen by a medical professional.

Ms Ogden added: “If as a family member you are often being asked to repeat yourself, then that’s an indication someone isn’t hearing clearly.”

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3.) Becoming withdrawn from social situations

According to the audiologist, if you see a family member becoming more and more withdrawn from conversations or purposely avoiding social situations, then this is a “good indicator” to book a hearing test.

She said: “As humans we need to be social and hearing loss can definitely hinder this need and that needs to be addressed quickly.”

In addition to the signs outlined by Ms Ogden the following are listed by the NHS on its official website as indicators of hearing loss:

  • Difficulty hearing on the phone
  • Finding it hard to keep up with a conversation
  • Feeling tired or stressed from having to concentrate while listening

Ms Ogden explained that people will often not realise they’re developing hearing loss for a multitude of reasons.

She said: “Most often it’s because hearing loss is usually a gradual thing, and the brain is constantly adapting to this.

“So, it may well be that a person doesn’t realise the TV is too loud, or that you aren’t mumbling because for them it has become normal.

“I will say if someone experiences a sudden hearing loss, go and see someone straight away. This is a serious thing and needs immediate attention.”

Anyone who’s concerned about their hearing should take a hearing assessment as soon as possible.

These can be done through the following methods:

  • Book a free test online
  • Book directly with an independent hearing care professional
  • Finding a professional who can come directly to their home address
  • Arranging an appointment with your GP who can then put you on the NHS pathway
  • Walk-in to your local store which offers hearing assessments

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