Losing the ability to hear can be a worrisome time, therefore it is important to know exactly the problem that you are dealing with. Today, we will be looking at the different reasons for hearing loss, in particular conductive hearing loss.
The Three Types of Hearing Loss
There are three main varieties of hearing loss, including the aforementioned conductive hearing loss, sensorineural hearing loss, and mixed hearing loss. We will go into closer detail on each of these.
Conductive hearing loss occurs whenever blockages, excess fluids, or interior damage cause a problem in the outer ear, middle ear or ear canal. Typically, individuals will describe difficulty hearing lower frequency sounds, as well as a decreased ability to clearly distinguish louder sound waves. There are a variety of causes for this type of hearing loss; these include:
- Multiple ear infections
- An ear defect at birth
- Long entrenched earwax
- Fluid built up in the middle ear
- An unusual growth in the middle ear
These are some of the most common causes, but certainly not an extensive list. With that said, we recommend seeking out the advice of an audiologist if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.
Fortunately, it is often possible to restore hearing in an ear impacted by this type of hearing loss. The most important step that must be taken is seeing an audiologist. They will be able to effectively diagnose your type of hearing loss, the exact cause, and the steps required to restore hearing. Most often, audiologists will perform surgery, assign antibiotics, or recommend an alternate route. Additionally, it should be noted that in some cases, hearing can't be restored. In that scenario, it is recommended to seek out hearing aids.
The next type of hearing loss is sensorineural. For sensorineural hearing loss, patients often complain about an impaired ability to distinguish sounds, difficulty recognizing loudness, and muffled hearing. Sensorineural hearing loss is caused by damage to the inner ear, stemming from a few main causes.
- Hereditary causes
- Constant exposure to loud noise
- Certain medications and treatments
An audiologist will be able to confirm whether or not your hearing loss is sensorineural. If it is revealed that you do have sensorineural hearing loss you should use hearing aids. These will be of great benefit to your hearing ability.
Lastly, there is mixed hearing loss, which is a combination of conductive and sensorineural hearing loss. Because of this, many of the symptoms overlap from the previous categories. One common cause of mixed hearing loss is direct contact to the ear.
An audiologist will be able to determine on an individual basis whether the ear damage is mostly conductive or sensorineural. From there, they will recommend an appropriate course of action.
Hopefully, this article has provided you with some valuable information. Use this as a reference if you are experiencing problems with your ear