Q&A About Hearing Loss: The Facts
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Hearing Loss

Q&A About Hearing Loss: The Facts

If you are getting ready to work on your hearing health there are a variety of things you need to know. The following are the most common questions about hearing loss and general factual answers for your benefit:

    1. How does hearing loss occur?
      There are a variety of factors that cause hearing loss. Noise pollution, genetics, work environment, medications, lifestyle choices, and age.

      Our exposure to loud sounds whether it be musical venues to construction to overuse of headphones, all contribute to hearing loss.

      Age is the most dominant indicator of hearing loss known as presbycusis but the demographic is changing fast as factors such as noise pollution have increased.


    1. What are the symptoms of hearing loss?
      • The sound of speech becomes muffled or distorted
      • Harder to hear conversations when there is a noisy background
      • Need to keep turning up the volume on your entertainment and electronic devices
      • Asking people increases to repeat themselves increases
      • Regular sounds such as that of your phone or alarm are no longer hear


    1. Do I have hearing loss?
      If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms as listed above then there is a high probability that you are. In addition to that are you experiencing:

      • Fatigue trying to keep up with conversations
      • Starting to guess and fill in the gaps in conversations
      • Asking people to turn up the volume beyond everyone else’s comfort zone
      • Starting to withdraw from social situations
      • Feeling isolated


    1. Do I have hearing loss in both ears?
      It is quite normal to have a loss in both ears. If you have had an accident that involved a head or neck injury it might be different but your hearing health professional will help to determine that.

      Infections and blockages can also affect only one ear and not the other.

      Only a comprehensive hearing exam can determine the loss in each ear or only one.


    1. Does my job have anything to do with it?
      Chances are if you work in concert venues, ball games, construction or farming you are definitely at more risk for hearing loss than for example, an administrative assistant in a white-collar corporate environment.

      The American Disabilities Act was ratified and implemented to protect workers from hazardous sounds and prolonged exposure to them. It also has laws and preventive measures that are mandated for businesses to follow.


    1. Will my hearing loss be permanent?
      The extent of hearing loss a person has can only be measured by assessments and exams administered by a hearing health professional.

      Since there are many causes and contributors to hearing impairment only a detailed evaluation will enable you to take the correct and necessary precautions and/or actions.

      For example, your list of medications needs to be checked and modified in case they are the contributors, your ear canal might have a blockage due to wax buildup or an infection that can be remedied. These are some possibly impermanent causes of hearing loss.


    1. Will I be able to hear music or watch movies the way I used to?
      Once again it would require a consultation with your auditory specialist. Your hearing impairment can take many forms and many hearing devices are depending upon your needs.

      For example, if you are a musician there are special hearing implements that can keep your hearing abilities in tune with your needs. If you are a construction worker you will have different requirements to address such as headphones or earplugs to wear on-site.

    2. What hearing exams do I take?
      All the hearing exams are non-intrusive. They include an audiometry test for tones and frequencies that you can hear and one for discerning speech. Another one is called Tympanometry and it is used to gauge the physical responses of your middle ear to sounds.

      If necessary your audiologist can also suggest other tests for hidden hearing impairments and other underlying physical causes that are possibly creating hearing decline.

    3. Will I need hearing aids?
      This entirely depends upon the results and assessment made by your hearing health professional.


  1. How can I prevent it from becoming worse?
    Carry and use earplugs when necessary. Stay clear of and/or be immersed in loud sound environments. Make an appointment as soon as possible with a hearing health professional.

    We are here to take your call whenever you are comfortable and ready to see us or if you just need more information.