by Neil Bauman, Ph.D.
A man wrote:
For the last 10 or so years I have noticed a decline in my hearing. This year when I went to get tested, it was 55 dB in each ear.
A question I have is when I talk everyone says that I’m yelling at them, but to me I’m just talking. I stop and think there is no way I’m yelling. They tell me I cannot hear myself talk so I say things a lot louder, is that possible?
Very much so. You don’t hear your own voice as loud as you used to, so you speak up so you hear your voice at its accustomed volume. “Yelling” is a bit of an overstatement—but since you are definitely talking louder than normal, many people call it “yelling”. However, we know that we are not truly yelling because we know the effort it takes to really yell, and we are not doing that!
By the same token, when you get hearing aids, just the opposite can happen. Your amplified voice now seems so loud in your ears that you drop your voice and talk much softer than normal. People now have trouble hearing you. Fortunately, in time, you get used to how loud your voice should sound, and all will be well.