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by M Tandoh | 5:17 pm

Hearing impairment, deafness or hearing loss refers to a partial or total reduction in the ability to hear. The factors that caused hearing impairment are not limited to age, noise, illness and physical trauma. The severity of the hearing impairment can be diagnosed, and it is measured in decibels. The symptoms may be mild, moderate, severe or profoundly.1 in 6 of the UK adult population is affected by hearing loss.

The diseases or circumstances that can cause deafness are:

● Aging

● Injury

● Excessive noise exposure

● Chicken pox

● Cytomegalovirus

● Mumps

● Meningitis

● Sickle cell disease

● Syphilis

● Lyme disease

● Diabetes, as studies have shown that people with diabetes are more likely to have some kind of

hearing loss

● A treatment for tuberculosis (TB), streptomycin, that is believed to be a key risk factor

● Hypothyroidism

● Arthritis

● Some cancers

● Teenagers exposed to second-hand smoke

● Damage to the eardrum or middle ear can cause hearing loss and deafness in a range of ways.

Types of hearing loss:

Most of the people lose some degree of their hearing as they reach 65 and older, one out of three people have some type of hearing impairment. There are three types of hearing loss which are as follows:

Sensorineural hearing loss:

This is the most common type of hearing loss. Patients may experience a lack of sensitivity of sound or clarity of sound. The condition results in gradual loss of the sound receptors and nerve endings. The main reason of sensorineural hearing loss is hair cell damage, which is caused by long-term exposure to loud noises or high frequency sounds.

Conductive hearing loss:

In this type of hearing loss the vibrations are not passing through outer ear to the inner ear, specifically the Chloe. The main cause is the obstruction in the outer or middle ear, infections and diseases of the middle ear. Total deafness is rarely occurs due to conductive hearing impairments, and properly fitted hearing aid and sometimes surgical correction usually provides benefit.

Mixed hearing loss:

It is the combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss. It is caused by long-term ear infections which leads to damage both eardrum and the ossicles. Surgical intervention may restore hearing, but it is not always effective.

Symptoms:

Some people are born deaf, while others suddenly become deaf due to an accident and illness. Symptoms progress gradually over time.

The following signs may indicate a hearing problem in newborn:

● The baby does not turn their head toward a noise, before the age of 4 months.

● The baby still has not uttered a single word, before the age of 12 months.

● The infant does not appear to be startled by a loud noise.

● The infant only seems to be aware of certain sounds.

In Children:

● The child keeps on saying “what” or “pardon”.

● The child is behind others in oral communication at the same age.

● The utterances of the child are not clear.

Levels of hearing loss

The audiologists classified the hearing loss in the four levels which are as follows:

Mild hearing loss:

The quietest sounds you can hear with mild hearing loss are between 25 and 40 dB. If there is a lot of background noise then it is difficult for a person to understand the words other people are saying.

Moderate deafness:

People with moderate hearing loss cannot hear sounds that are less than 40-75 dB. It is very hard for a person with moderate deafness to understand the normal speech without using a hearing aid.

Severe hearing loss:

In severe hearing loss it is almost impossible to understand a normal speech without using a hearing aid. The person can only hear a sound that is above 70-89 dB.

Profound Deafness:

A person who cannot hear a sound below 90 dB has profound deafness. Using hearing aid is ineffective in this case and people rely on lip-reading, gesture and other visual cues.

Comments

Julius

Are there any ways to possibly reduce the symptoms or at least slow the process down of hearing loss? I understand aging is something we cannot control, though I am pretty sure there are ways to keep it in check in terms of certain lifestyle choices. Correct me if I’m wrong though!

Jan 14.2020 | 06:24 pm

Jeff

I really found your article informative with so much new information I never knew before, I never knew arthritis could cause hearing problems.
I was wondering if you know anything about pinched nerves in the neck causing any hearing problems, I am experiencing vision problems they tell me is from my pinched nerves

Jeff

Jan 14.2020 | 06:55 pm

    M Tandoh

    Hi Jeff,thank you for the comment.A lot of health problems have their roots in the neck.Pinched nerves in neck can often be caused by age-related degeneration of the spine or sometime discs can shorten, causing vertebrae to compress and irritate nearby nerves.I will advise you to get it check,hearing loss is only one problem among others.

    Jan 14.2020 | 09:35 pm

Carlton McFall

Hey this post makes a lot of sense. My granddad had diabetes and I swore as he got older with it it became harder and harder for him to hear me in the house so this would explain it. Great post.

Jan 14.2020 | 07:22 pm

    M Tandoh

    I will advice your granddad to mention it to his doctor.Hearing loss is handle better when is diagnose early. Thank you very much for your support Carlton.

    Jan 14.2020 | 08:36 pm

Rebecca Grant

What a useful post. I didn’t realize so many things contributed to hearing loss. My dad now wears a hearing aid as a result of hearing loss due to working in the engine room of a naval ship. The hearing aid has made a huge difference in his quality of life. I’m going to refer him to your website.

Jan 14.2020 | 10:29 pm

    M Tandoh

    Thank you Rebecca, am glad you find it useful.

    Jan 15.2020 | 06:43 pm

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