If someone had told me that I would be having severe hearing loss at the age of 27, I’d have laughed at them. There’s no way, right? 27 is way too young to be having problems like that. Hearing loss is for old people! Am I right??
That’s what I always thought, until I began experiencing symptoms of hearing loss at the ripe young age of 22. In the early spring of 2012, I had an ear infection. I had not had one since I was a child. I went to my dr, was given antibiotics, and sent on on my way. I took my antibiotics as prescribed. The ear infection cleared up. As the infection cleared up, I noticed that my hearing was still a little muffled. This was worrisome, as I had not had any hearing problems up until that point. I went back to my dr, told him the issues. I was told my hearing loss was due to seasonal allergies, and it would clear up by taking decongestants.
I tried the decongestants for a couple of weeks, and I did not notice any improvement. I decided to seek another opinion. The second dr I saw gave me nasal spray, and said “seasonal allergies.” I decided at this point to try to get in to see an Ear Nose & Throat (ENT) specialist. To see ENT, I had to have a referral. I obtained the referral and off I went to ENT.
In the spring of 2013, ENT was able to do a full hearing test and ear exam to determine if my ears were structurally sound. Structurally, my ears were fine. There was no physical damage. However, there was no debate that sound was not traveling to my brain along the nerves the way it was supposed to be. I was told that I had 30% hearing loss in each ear, and that I qualified for hearing aids. I was told that it was nerve damage, and there was no way to know if it would get worse, or how quickly it would worsen.
Now, at that age I was in a state of denial. I still am to some degree. So, I decided to ignore the doctor and continue living my life the same as I had been. I mean, the sound was a little muffled but it wasn’t horrible. I could still clearly hear almost everything that people said to me. Sure, I couldn’t hear the sweet little old lady patients at work, but who can?
I’ve moved on to a different job now. Over the last year, I have noticed a significant change in my hearing. A tiny part of me is still in denial. I had talked to a couple of friends a few months ago about to going to see about gettin hearing aids, but I still have dragged my feet about it. A little over a week ago, my boss approached me and said that her and her husband had discussed it, and they wanted to help me pay for hearing aids.
I guess I can’t really drag my feet anymore right?