How Often Should You Get Your Hearing Checked?

When Should You Have Your Hearing Checked

Gone are the days when hearing loss is just for old people.

To be perfectly honest, it really never was just for old folks, but people perceived it to be. In modern times, we recognize that hearing impairments can affect individuals of any age, not just the elderly.

So, that brings up a good question. If hearing loss can affect any individual at any point in their life, how often should you get your hearing checked to make sure it hasn’t hit YOU?

The answer to this question really depends on your age.

Hearing testing for infants and toddlers

In the United States, newborn hearing testing is an important part of a baby’s first checkup and is completed before she even leaves the hospital. This is a great way to detect cases of genetic hearing loss or a hearing impairment present at birth.

Following this initial test, many children are not tested again until they reach school age. If a toddler does not seem to be developing appropriately or adequately responding to auditory stimuli, however, an interim hearing evaluation may be warranted.

Hearing tests for school-age children

As with many of the other senses, hearing plays a big role in how well children learn in school. That’s why most children undergo hearing testing when they first enter school (age 5 or 6) and periodically throughout their school years. The most common subsequent intervals are around age 10 (middle school) and at least once during high school. If the child changes schools, that institution may require new testing, especially if current hearing test records are not available for the student.

Hearing evaluation in adulthood

While many individuals begin to have at least partial hearing loss after age 50, it can actually start much earlier than that but not be noticeable because it’s so gradual. In general, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association advises adults to get a hearing test every 10 years until they turn 50. After that, the interval shortens to every 3 years.

Risk factors for hearing loss change the schedule

Of course, not every person is the same and individual environments can create additional risk factors for hearing loss. These include, but are not limited to:

If any of these risk factors are present, it may be a good idea to have your hearing checked on a more frequent schedule. If in doubt, or if you experience any changes in hearing, schedule an appointment with an audiologist for a thorough evaluation. In many cases, early detection of hearing impairments makes treatment more successful and can lead to a higher quality of life. Your hearing is too precious to leave unnoticed!

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