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Hearing loss and wearing masks? Doctors explain the cause

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QUINCY (WGEM) -- The pandemic is revealing something you might not expect, in that more people are struggling with hearing loss than they realize.

Quincy Audiology doctor Kevin Ballard says more people are getting their hearing checked as more people wear masks.

Ballard says it's not just people who have hearing issues already, but also people who thought they had normal hearing.

"We all, even people with normal hearing, we all use visual ques to communicate. But for somebody that doesn't have the best hearing, they're going to be relying that much more on those visual ques," Ballard explained.

He says its because people are used to reading lips and now they can't as much.

"The impact of just losing those visual ques, lip reading to some degree or another has caused people to have to reconsider maybe a minimal hearing loss," Ballard added.

Ballard says if this has been happening to you, there are things you can do.

He suggests to get your hearing evaluated, use clear face masks when possible, annunciate well, slow down and manage background noise.

Do you need a hearing test? Click here to find out.

Charity Bell

Multimedia Journalist at WGEM

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