I knew for several years that my hearing wasn’t great, but I just thought it was a mild loss that is common with aging. People just mumbled all the time. And anyway, I could hear speech just fine, I just couldn’t understand any of it. I’ve never been much for big social events, and I found myself avoiding them entirely because I couldn’t follow any conversation.
Finally, when I realised I couldn’t understand most of what people were saying in a quiet room and speaking directly to me, I had my hearing tested. I was shocked–though in retrospect, I shouldn’t have been–to be diagnosed with a moderate to severe bilateral SN hearing loss. My audi told me I needed a very strong prescription, and she was practically yelling at me to get me to understand!
Hearing aids made a huge difference, but it’s been pretty much downhill ever since with the respect to the amount of amplification I need. I still do OK, but sure miss the old days.