Visiting your audiologist for a hearing test is one of the most effective ways to diagnose whether you have hearing loss, as well as the type and severity of it. Having hearing loss diagnosed early gives you a chance to treat the problem before it further deteriorates. If you’re thinking about making an appointment, here are the top reasons you should.

You don’t hear as well as you used to

The reason that most people arrange a hearing test is that they’re concerned about their hearing. Hearing loss can be hard to spot, as most times it will happen very gradually. If you notice trouble hearing sounds that you were once able to, have trouble following speech or find that you have to turn the volume up on your TV, you might have an issue with hearing loss. Your audiologist can help you get to the bottom of it.

You work or spend time in loud environments

Many of us spend time in environments where loud noises are a factor, often without the protection we need. Noisy work environments like construction sites and factories are mandated by law to provide hearing protection, but that isn’t the case for going to a firework show, enjoying loud rock concerts or using power tools in the garage. Any noise over 85 decibels puts you at a risk of developing hearing loss. The louder the noise or longer the exposure, the greater the risk. It’s a good idea to make an appointment for a test if you have a job or hobby that regularly exposes you to loud levels of noise.

It’s been two years since your last hearing test

Having a hearing test every two years allows the audiologist to make note of any changes to your baseline exam. As mentioned, hearing loss can be gradual, and a hearing test can help you catch the earliest signs of it even if you’re unaware. Even if you already wear a hearing aid, regular hearing tests are important to measure whether there are any differences in your hearing and if a new setting or refitting is necessary.

You’re over 60 and never had a hearing test

As we age, hearing loss becomes a larger risk. By the time we’re over 60, around 50 percent of us will have some form of hearing loss. It’s a natural part of aging. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t do something to improve your hearing. Hearing aids can vastly improve your ability to hear, making it easier to communicate with the world around you. Otherwise, it’s a good idea to arrange an appointment simply to learn some tips to help prevent hearing loss for longer.

If any of the circumstances above apply to you, then it’s a good idea to make an appointment with your audiologist as soon as possible. They can guide you through the process, help you better understand your hearing health and help you choose the right treatments if necessary.