“Normal” Hearing, Yet Fighting to Follow Conversations

female professional struggling with conversation in the office.

Your workplace recently adopted the trend of open-office floor plans, encouraging cooperation and teamwork. But this new setup has become a struggle for you. Not because you miss the privacy of cubicle walls, but because the increased noise makes it hard to follow conversations.

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

Significant brain power is required to undertake the complex task of speech recognition. Optimal hearing capabilities are needed to differentiate voices in noisy environments.

As hearing begins to go, the brain faces difficulties in isolating and processing speech signals amidst competing sounds. Because of this, it becomes mentally exhausting to be in loud environments like restaurants and bustling offices.

Recognizing hearing loss when it’s in its early phases

Early indications of hearing loss manifest in various ways:

  • Social isolation.
  • Problems understanding conversations in loud environments.
  • The brain has to work extra hard to comprehend speech leading to increased mental exhaustion.

Testing for hearing loss

It can be especially difficult to identify these kinds of challenges when traditional hearing diagnostics appear to reveal normal hearing. However, researchers are looking at innovative tests to identify early signs of hearing loss:

  • The Eye Test: A special pair of glasses is utilized in this test. These glasses can keep track of the movement and dilation of your pupils. If your pupils behave in a certain way, it suggests that you’re concentrating a little harder than normal. So if this tends to happen in crowded or noisy areas, it could be an indication that you’re having to strain to hear.
  • Monitoring Electrical Signals: In this test, a device tracks the electrical EEG signals transmitted 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 strong indication of some problems with your hearing.

Early intervention will be possible if these tests, combined with personal observation, are able to identify hearing issues in their very early stages.

The benefits of early detection

There are two important advantages to early detection.

  • Addressing hearing loss promptly prevents mental decline associated with untreated hearing impairments.
  • It offers clarity with regard to challenges faced in settings like open offices, alleviating potential frustrations.

Consider finding help if you’re having trouble understanding speech even with “normal” hearing.

Total mental function and auditory health will be improved by early detection. Contact us today and let us help you with any hearing loss you may have.

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.