Even though adults commonly develop hearing loss as they get older, hearing problems can occur at any age, affecting your success at work and taking a toll on your self-esteem and social life. If you’re worried about your hearing, Kevin Sharim, and the team at Sharp Hearing Care Professionals can conduct a thorough hearing evaluation. They can then treat the underlying cause if an issue is diagnosed, and they offer an extensive selection of assistive listening devices and hearing aids. To embark on your path to better hearing, call one of the offices in Oxnard, Santa Barbara, West Hills, and Santa Monica, California, or request an appointment online.
There are three types of hearing loss:
Conductive hearing loss occurs when you have a problem in your outer or middle ear. This type of hearing loss may develop due to a variety of problems, including ear infections, fluid in your middle ear, excessive earwax, and damage to your eardrum or middle ear. Conductive hearing loss is usually treated with medication or surgery.
You develop sensorineural hearing loss when your inner ear or auditory nerve is damaged. This type of hearing loss often occurs due to aging, exposure to loud sounds, an injury or illness, and certain medications. Unlike conductive hearing loss, sensorineural hearing loss is permanent.
This condition occurs when you have conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
Many patients assume they’ll have obvious and unmistakable symptoms when their hearing declines. But most hearing loss happens so slowly that you won’t recognize the changes at first.
One of the earliest signs of hearing loss is having a hard time hearing high-pitched sounds. You may find that you can hear the voices of men better than the higher-pitched ones of women, for example. During a conversation, people may sound like they’re muffled or mumbling.
If you need to turn up the volume on your television, or you often ask people to speak more clearly, slowly, or loudly, you may have hearing loss.
Age-related hearing loss, called presbycusis, develops over time as the tiny nerve cells lining your inner ear become damaged. These cells turn sound waves into electrical impulses, and then the impulses travel to your brain over the auditory nerve.
Presbycusis is often caused by age-related degeneration. However, you may suffer similar damage to nerve cells over years of exposure to loud sounds.
Your audiologist at Sharp Hearing Care Professionals reviews your medical history and conducts a comprehensive hearing evaluation, including examining your ear and performing hearing tests. Then they develop an individualized treatment based on the underlying cause of your hearing loss.
If you have sensorineural hearing loss, you’ll need assistive listening devices, a hearing aid, or a cochlear implant. Your audiologist treats other types of hearing problems with options such as cleaning out earwax, medications, and surgical procedures.
If you’re worried about potential hearing loss, call Sharp Hearing Care Professionals or request an appointment online.