Learning about hearing loss can help you take the important first step, which is recognizing you have a treatable condition. And if you happen to be one of the millions of people struggling with hearing loss, you don’t have to suffer in silence. A wide array of solutions is available to address this problem.
Hearing loss severity, underlying cause, and impacted part of the ear can vary considerably from person to person. You may notice hearing loss in one or both ears. If both ears are affected, the hearing in one ear may be better than in the other. If hearing loss is gradual, you likely won’t notice it as much as when it happens suddenly. The three primary types of hearing loss are sensorineural, conductive, and mixed. Learning about the three types should help you communicate better with your doctor about your hearing loss, which will guide your treatment.
The most common symptoms impact clarity of sound and loudness. Symptoms can be physical and behavioral:
Idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss is a perplexing condition as its cause remains unknown in most cases. It is typically characterized by a rapid onset of hearing loss, often occurring within a 72-hour period. The exact mechanisms behind ISSHL are still under investigation, and various theories have been proposed, including viral infections, immune system disorders, and vascular events.
In contrast, non-idiopathic hearing loss can be categorized into different types, such as conductive and mixed hearing loss. Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound waves are unable to reach the inner ear due to problems in the outer or middle ear, such as earwax buildup, ear infections, or abnormalities in the ear structure. Mixed hearing loss is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
These are the symptoms you might experience when you have conductive hearing loss:
If you think you have hearing loss, schedule an appointment with your primary care doctor as soon as possible. They may be able to diagnose and treat your hearing problem. Your doctor may refer you to an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor) or an audiologist (a health professional who can identify and measure hearing loss). Take this important second step and you’ll discover hearing loss doesn’t have to negatively impact your quality of life!
It's time to finally treat your hearing loss. Sign up for a free consultation with a licensed hearing care professional today to determine if you have hearing loss. It’s the start of your journey towards better hearing.