Age-related hearing loss is usually classified as mild to moderate hearing loss. If you have mild hearing loss, you will have difficulty hearing and understanding soft tones, or hearing distant sounds or words spoken in the presence of loud background noise. People with moderate hearing loss have difficulty hearing normal speech even at short distances.
What is age-related hearing loss?
Age-related hearing loss can occur gradually after a certain age. It is one of the most common conditions suffered by the elderly and very elderly. Age-related hearing loss usually occurs in both ears. And because the loss starts gradually, the affected person may not even know they have lost their hearing.
Hearing loss can be announced in many ways.
You may also have Alzheimer’s if you know that:
- You have difficulty understanding conversations in a noisy environment.
- You have the impression that the person you are talking to is mumbling.
- Others say your TV and radio are too loud.
- You miss phone calls and doorbells.
- You barely notice nature sounds, such as birdsong or other high pitched sounds.
- You don’t hear household noises, such as the humming of the refrigerator.
- hey, think low tones such as street noises are very loud.
If you experience any of these symptoms, see an otolaryngologist or hearing care specialist in your area find out if you have hearing loss and why. Presbyopia usually progresses insidiously, and it can take a long time for people to notice it. However, the earlier treatment is given, the better the success of the treatment. Deafness is often accompanied by tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Even then, you should seek professional help.
Causes of Age-Related Hearing Loss.
It is not always easy to distinguish between age-related hearing loss and other causes of hearing loss. In addition, there may be multiple causes of a person’s hearing loss. Noise-induced hearing loss is caused by prolonged or prolonged exposure to sound. First, this can damage the sensory hair cells in the ear that make hearing possible. Once these hair cells are damaged, they will not grow back and therefore hearing will be permanently damaged. Typical age-related diseases such as high blood pressure or diabetes can further aggravate hearing loss. Drugs that are toxic to the sensory cells in the ear (such as certain chemotherapy drugs) can also cause hearing loss.
How does age-related hearing loss develop?
Usually, normal physical wear and tear is the main cause of age-related hearing loss as we age. The hair cells, which are essential for our hearing, always vibrate when sound (i.e. tone) is applied to them. However, if the volume (=vibration) becomes too large, the hair cells break and cannot regenerate. The affected person hears worse. In addition to the natural process of wear and tear, there are other factors that can lead to age-related hearing loss.
- Cardiovascular and metabolic diseases
- Genetic factors/family susceptibility
- Nicotine consumption
Sometimes, however, there are completely harmless causes behind hearing loss, such as earplugs (ear wax).
Hearing Loss – What to do about it?
If you notice symptoms of hearing loss, we recommend that you have your hearing tested by an ENT doctor or one of our stores nationwide. A hearing test will provide information about your hearing performance, whether you are affected by age-related hearing loss and whether hearing aids can help you. If a hearing test diagnoses a hearing loss, the first step is to consult an ENT doctor who will clarify the reasons and discuss them with you. It is important to note that hearing aids are a health insurance benefit if they are prescribed by your ENT physician. At your next visit to the hearing aid acoustician, you will be provided with detailed advice on the right hearing aid for you. Because hearing needs vary so much from person to person, in-depth, personal advice is of great value. With modern hearing aids, it is often possible to retain residual hearing. After a certain degree of adaptation, your brain and your hearing will learn to communicate with each other again so that you can learn about your hearing again. Conclusion: You don’t have to agree on age-related hearing loss: Hearing aids can help, and are small, unobtrusive, and powerful. They improve the quality of life for people who have been greatly affected and enable them to participate in society again.
Can You Prevent Hearing Loss in Old Age?
If you lead a healthy lifestyle, you can play an active role in preventing age-related hearing loss, or at least in preventing it from becoming severe. It is helpful too, among other things.
- Avoiding noise and/or wearing hearing protection
- Avoiding nicotine consumption
- Maintaining a healthy diet
- Wearing a hat in cold weather (if you are prone to ear infections)
If you have any other questions about your ability to hear, we invite you to a free consultation: we will open our hearts and minds to all your concerns because good hearing is very important – even for older people.