Hearing loss can be caused by several factors. If you are noticing hearing difficulty, it is important to know the possible causes and how they may affect your hearing both now and in the future. Over time as we get older our bodies wear down and break but with a little help from the right hearing health professionals, you can still do what you love for many years to come.

The three common causes of hearing loss are age-related hearing loss, noise-induced hearing loss and genetics.

Age

Age is a major factor that can cause hearing loss, especially as you age. As your body ages, it goes through changes and sometimes those changes affect the way sound enters the ear canal. Over time these changes make it more difficult for people to hear what others are saying. This problem known as presbycusis affects about half of all adults over the age of 75.

As you get older, your hair cells wear down and can no longer send sound signals to your brain. This type of hearing loss cannot be reversed because a person’s natural ability to hear gradually diminishes with age.

Some symptoms you may notice are:

  • You may notice that people seem to mumble or talk too fast for you to understand them.
  • Turning up the volume of the television too high.
  • Difficulty hearing high-pitched sounds like women’s and children’s voices.

Loud Noise

Loud noise can damage your hair cells, leading to a temporary or permanent threshold shift. Noise-induced hearing loss is the most common kind of occupational injury. When you work in a loud environment, such as on an airplane or at a factory, it is important to wear ear protection. Loud noise can damage the tiny sensory hair cells that line your inner ears and cause hearing loss. Listening to loud music for extended periods can also harm the hair cells in the ear, destroying them.

Genetics

The third cause is a genetic predisposition to premature hearing loss. This type of hearing loss is not as common as age-related or loud noise-induced but does occur more often in those with other factors such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and others.

Hearing loss can be caused by many different factors. In some cases, it is present from birth and is known as congenital hearing loss. This type of hearing loss may affect both ears and just one ear depending on the disorder that has arisen during development in utero.

A genetic cause for hearing loss is an inherited condition passed from parent to child. However, the majority of genetic disorders that cause hearing loss are inherited in a recessive pattern and therefore both parents must be carriers for it to present itself within their children.

There are several different causes of hearing loss that can be extremely common. These include exposure to loud noises, aging or hereditary. Regardless of the cause, it is important to understand why this type of damage occurs, so you know how best to protect yourself against future instances. Seek out a hearing health professional as they will be able to recommend the relevant advice to proceed, either tips like ear protection for your loud workplace or treatment like hearing aids if necessary.

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