Top FAQs About Hearing Loss

a hearing professional explaining hearing aids to her patient

Hearing loss is a common condition that affects many people. Fortunately, there have been great strides made in the treatment of hearing loss, and this means that it’s possible to continue living a full life, even if you have severe hearing loss. We’re going to run through some of the most common questions that people have about hearing loss.

What are the symptoms of hearing loss?

Most people recognize that they are experiencing hearing loss in a direct way. That is, they find that it’s increasingly difficult to follow conversations or to hear things that they used to be able to hear. While hearing can decline slightly as we get older, your hearing should not have a negative impact on your life. If that’s what’s happening, then you could have a level of hearing loss that requires treatment.

What causes hearing loss?

There are many different things that can cause hearing loss. The number one factor is simple age; our sense of hearing can weaken as we get older. But other things can have an influence too. For example, if you work in a loud environment, or you’re continually exposed to loud noises as part of your lifestyle. An injury to the eardrum or an ear infection can also cause hearing loss. 

How is hearing loss determined?

If you suspect that you have hearing loss, then it’ll be a good idea to make an appointment with an audiologist, who will be able to carry out an examination to determine whether you have hearing loss, as well as the severity of the loss. The test is painless and usually brief and involves testing your ability to follow speech and hearing tones. 

What are the different levels of hearing loss?

There are different levels of hearing loss. Once your examination has been complete, your level of hearing will be put into a category. Most people are in the following categories:

  • Mild: Mild hearing loss means that you struggle to hear well when you’re in a loud environment.
  • Moderate: Following conversations can be difficult, and you turn the TV up louder than normal.
  • Moderately severe: Hearing in both loud and quiet settings is difficult. 

What treatments are available for hearing loss?

There are many different treatments available for hearing loss, and the one that’s right for you will depend on the underlying cause and severity. If it’s caused by an ear infection, then surgery might be required to restore the hearing. That’s rare, however. Most people will find the hearing aids can improve their hearing. There are multiple different hearing devices available, including ones that sit in the ear (ITE), in the canal (ITC) and behind the ear (BTE). Your audiologist will work with you to find the one that’s right for you. 

If you suspect that you or a loved one is experiencing hearing loss, then it’s recommended that you make an appointment with an audiologist as soon as possible. They’ll be able to determine the extent of the loss and offer a treatment solution.