Hearing Loss – Symptoms And Causes
Over 5% of the world’s population faces some degree of hearing loss. Most of which are old aged adults. Symptoms might be as minor as a little difficulty in hearing sounds to complete deafness. Hearing loss can occur due to issues in various parts of the ear i.e. ear canal, eardrum, or middle ear and its little bones.
Having a mother who suffers from hearing impairment, I can understand it can get really difficult to tackle the treatment sometimes. I remember when my mother was diagnosed with hearing impairment we took her to the best audiologist in Islamabad we could find and we were told that the impairment cannot be reversed completely. However, knowing the symptoms and the cause of hearing loss can help in treatment.
Here is what the doctor told us about the symptoms and causes of hearing loss:
Symptoms of Hearing Loss
The common symptoms of hearing loss difficulty or inability to hear consonants, blabbering or muffling of speech, stop replying in between a conversation, frequently asked to speak loud, slow, or clear, difficulty in understanding things especially around the background noise, turning the television volume really up, and avoiding social conversations.
Causes of Hearing loss
Some of the common causes of hearing loss are:
Inner Ear Damage
Age and noisy activities can cause adverse effects in the cochlea of the hair or nerve cells that transmit sound signals to the brain. Electrical impulses are not processed as effectively and hearing loss happens where these fibers or nerve cells are impaired or absent. High pitched voices might seem normal for them. Choosing words amid background noise can be challenging for them.
If the earwax builds up in your ear, it can actually block your ear canal and make voices harder to reach. In such cases getting rid of excessive earwax can restore the hearing.
This condition is also called tympanic membrane perforation and it happens when there is excessive noise bursts, abrupt pressure shifts, insertion of an object into your eardrum and injury can force your eardrum to burst and damage your hearing ability.
Other Ear Disorders
Infections in the outer or middle ear, tumors in the ear, or abnormal bone growth can also cause hearing loss.
As we age our ear structure degenerates. This can lead to hearing loss
The cells in our inner ear may be affected by listening to loud noises. The loss might be caused by long-term exposure to loud noises or by a sudden outburst of sound, such as an explosion.
The inner ear can be harmed by medications such as the antibiotic gentamicin, sildenafil (Viagra), and certain chemotherapy drugs. If you take extremely large doses of aspirin, some pain killers, antimalarial medications, or loop diuretics, intermittent effects on your hearing can develop.
If you see any signs of hearing disability in you or your loved ones, contact an audiologist immediately. They might treat you with medication or suggest some hearing equipment that can help with hearing.