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3 Types of Hearing Loss
The human ear is a very complex thing that is made up of several parts. Therefore, hearing loss can occur when any of those elements start to show signs of failure.
Understanding the different types of hearing loss can give you the best chance of spotting and treating those problems. When a problem does surface, booking an appointment to see a hearing specialist is still advised if you want the best and quickest solution. Here are three of the issues that they may detect.
Conductive hearing loss
The ability to hear is made possible through the ear’s ability to detect sounds and transmit them to the brain. Therefore, when sound fails to travel efficiently through the outer and middle ear, problems will occur. This concept can cover a variety of more specific circumstances. But those issues collectively fall into the category of conductive hearing loss.
This is a pretty common form of hearing loss. A hearing care provider may detect blockages caused by earwax, debris or trapped water. Similarly, allergies, ear infections and illnesses like flu can disrupt hearing in the middle and outer parts of the ear. In some cases, a deformed pinna or ear canal can cause ongoing issues.
Conductive hearing loss is often treatable with medicines or surgery. If the hearing health professional can remove the blockage or correct the damage, your hearing will see a big difference in no time.
Sensorineural hearing loss
Healthy hearing also relies on a healthy inner ear (cochlea). Likewise, the auditory nerve that transmits sound information to the brain needs to be in perfect health. When either of these areas suffers damage, it will lead to what is known as a sensorineural hearing loss.
This can occur for an array of reasons. In many cases, it will be due to genetics or aging. Similarly, continued exposure to loud noises will gradually encourage sensorineural hearing loss. Injuries, especially to the head, and diseases are also possible roots of those problems. Naturally, being tested by a hearing specialist is the best way to discover the extent, source, and type of damage.
Unlike most conductive hearing loss features, sensorineural is usually permanent. Unless it has been caused by a virus, there’s often no way to repair the damage. Thankfully, though, the hearing loss can often be managed.
Mixed hearing loss
Given that the different parts of the ear system are closely linked, it should be no surprise that some people suffer a combination of the two. When both the outer and outer/middle parts of the ear have been damaged, it’s labeled as a mixed hearing loss.
Many patients do not realize that they are suffering from both aspects. A hearing health provider can check for both, and find the best solution for mixed loss. From repairing conductive loss to managing the sensorineural loss, this will make a big impact. The benefits often show in super fast time too.
All types of hearing loss are scary. However, identifying the type of problem is the first step to dealing with the issue. In either scenario, a hearing specialist is your best shot.