Things to Know about Hearing Loss
Hearing loss can be a difficult and frustrating condition to deal with for the hearing impaired and their family and friends. With this article, we hope to offer some important facts about this condition.
- Hearing loss is a major public health issue that is the third most common physical condition after arthritis and heart disease.
- Gradual hearing loss can affect people of all ages — varying from mild to profound.
- Hearing loss is a sudden or gradual decrease in how well you can hear. Depending on the cause, it can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent.
- Degrees of hearing loss: mild, moderate, severe, profound.
- Congenital hearing loss means you are born without hearing, while gradual hearing loss happens over time.
- Hearing loss is an invisible condition; we cannot see it, only its effects. Because the presence of a hearing loss is not visible, these effects may be attributed to aloofness, confusion, or personality changes.
- In adults, the most common causes of hearing loss are noise and aging.
- There is a strong relationship between age and reported hearing loss.
- In age-related hearing loss, known as presbycusis, changes in the inner ear that happen as you get older cause a slow but steady decrease in hearing ability. The loss may be mild or severe, and it is always permanent.
- In older people, a hearing loss is often confused with, or complicates, such conditions as dementia.
- Noise-induced hearing loss may happen slowly over time or suddenly. Being exposed to everyday noises, such as listening to very loud music, being in a noisy work environment, or using a lawn mower, can lead to hearing loss over many years.Sudden, noise-induced hearing loss from gunfire and explosions is the number one disability caused by combat in current wars.
- More often than not, severe tinnitus (or ringing in the ears) will accompany the hearing loss and may be just as debilitating as the hearing loss itself.
- Other causes of hearing loss include earwax buildup, an object in the ear, injury to the ear or head, ear infection, a ruptured eardrum, and other conditions that affect the middle or inner ear.
To learn more about the signs and symptoms of hearing loss, call Republic Hearing Care at 417-647-2161 or stop by one of our offices at 145 W. State Hwy. 174 in Republic or 3816 S Greystone Court in Springfield.