Monday, February 4, 2013

Aging Puzzle--ears

It’s a lot easier to find material now that I’ve decided to devote every other post to a report about Getting Old.  Today’s isn’t so much a whine as a puzzle.  Looking for some income tax papers, I just  came across last year’s mis-filed hearing test.  Fine,  I’ve been wanting to compare it with the one I took last week. 
In the Pure Tone test, the new chart looks just about identical to last year’s.  Nothing lost.  Right ear still better than the left.  Same low notes still test better than same high ones, at about the same levels.    So here’s the puzzle:  On Word Recognition (You.. will.. say .. “base..ball”) last year I recognized 92% of the words with the right ear, 72% with the left.  This year it’s 56 and 52.  No wonder I miss the joke when everyone else is chuckling.  But I wish I’d thought to discuss that with the doctor.  If I still hear the same sounds, why don’t I get the same words? 
My own suspicion:  it’s not the ears, it’s the brain.  Which does, come to think of it, seem to be lazing off in other areas.
Any ideas?

1 comment:

  1. Edith, a lot of people would be VERY lucky to have your brain even in what you perceive as its present state. That said, you may be experiencing some decline in central auditory processing (i.e., in the brain rather than the ears, as you speculate). But the problem with folks like you who start from a very high level is that it's hard to get the medical profession excited about what you experience as a decline. My husband is having the same problem at present with his memory: It's not as good as he expects it should be, but it's still better than most other people's!