Band Member for 25 Years
Q. I have been in various ‘for fun’ garage bands in Austin for the past 25 years. Am I going to need hearing aids one day?
A. It’s a possibility. Exposure to loud noise is the main reason people develop hearing loss. Some noises are so loud, they cause permanent and noticeable hearing loss immediately.
In the case of ongoing exposure to garage bands for 25 years, you might already have some degree of hearing loss to certain sounds. The best way to find out is to schedule a hearing test and get a thorough explanation of the results. Regardless of the test’s outcome, future tests will help show you how your hearing changes over time.
Hearing loss is not an ‘all or nothing’ condition. It happens in degrees. With your garage bands, are you turning your amps up more than before? Are you mixing in more and more trebles to make the music sound ‘right’? You might hear the bass line playing just fine, but the snare on the drums sounds flat.
A person can have excellent hearing for some sounds, and still have profound hearing loss for other sounds. And when enough sounds become difficult to hear, it can affect how clearly you hear voices. Since hearing loss is usually very gradual, get a good baseline test soon.