Health Watch -- Hearing Loss

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

When you gathered with your family for Thanksgiving, did you struggle to keep up with the conversation? You might just have a noisy family, but you could also have hearing loss. Doctors at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas say a change in hearing, a ringing in the ears, exposure to loud sounds and a family history of hearing loss are all good reasons to have your hearing checked.

Dr. Angela Shoup (as in SOUP), an ear, nose and throat specialist at UT Southwestern, says some signs of mild hearing loss, which is generally in the high-frequency range, include difficulty hearing a conversation when there's background noise, difficulty hearing people from a distance or difficulty understanding dialogue in television shows and movies.

About 28 million Americans have some degree of hearing loss. If a test finds that you've lost hearing, your doctor can discuss treatment options with you.


Nov. 2004

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