Problems With Hearing:
4 Types of Hearing Loss You Need to Know
Around 15% of American adults say they have some trouble hearing. It's true that some degree of hearing loss is normal as we age. But if you're young and have issues with hearing, then you might be experiencing abnormally fast hearing loss.
If you're having problems with hearing, then you'll want to understand what you're facing. That way, you can find the culprit and hopefully fix things.
Here are the 4 types of hearing loss you need to know about.
1. Conductive Hearing Loss
Conductive hearing loss is when sounds can't get through your outer or middle ear. Some people are born with a defect (like microtia or atresia) that prevents sound waves from traveling correctly.
Others may have suffered from damage to the middle ear or eardrums. And sometimes, it's as simple as fluid or earwax buildup that results in conductive hearing loss.
Treatment for this type of hearing loss will depend on what's causing the issue. But it can usually be resolved through hearing aids, surgery, or medicine.
2. Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss happens when the inner ear or acoustic nerve is damaged. This is the type of hearing loss you naturally go through when aging or because of your genetics.
You can also experience sensorineural hearing loss if you've been exposed to loud noises. Other causes include ototoxic medications and illnesses like meningitis.
What's unfortunate about this type of hearing loss is it's permanent. While you can't reverse it, you can hear better through the use of hearing aids or cochlear implants.
3. Mixed Hearing Loss
It's very common to suffer from both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss. When this happens, it's called mixed hearing loss.
Because this type of hearing loss affects the inner, outer, and/or middle ear, it tends to be more serious.
You can treat mixed hearing loss to a degree. Not only can you use hearing aids and cochlear implants, but you can also get surgery done to fix your ears.
4. Auditory Neuropathy Spectrum Disorder
Auditory neuropathy spectrum disorder (ANSD) occurs when sound waves can enter your ear just fine, but your brain can't process them. This is due to damage to the hearing nerve or inner ear.
What can be frustrating is that people with ANSD seem to get through hearing tests fine. But they have issues with processing spoken words.
Treatment for ANSD includes hearing aids and cochlear implants. For more serious cases, you may need sign language or a picture exchange communication system (PECS).
Read here if you want to find out more about hearing loss.
Got Problems With Hearing?
If you have problems with hearing, now you can narrow down what type of hearing loss you have.
The next step is to get your hearing checked with an audiologist and confirm your suspicions. From there, they can recommend the best course of action so you can get back to normal life as much as possible.
For more on health and wellness, make sure to read our other blog posts.