Can All Forms of Hearing Loss Be Treated With a Hearing Aid?

It is difficult to make generalizations about the causes and prevention of hearing loss, as there are a wide variety of different conditions that can lead to hearing difficulties. Some of these conditions are inherited, while others are caused by environmental factors; some are preventable, while others require treatment using medications, surgery, or assistant devices such as a hearing aid. Although they are common, these devices are not used to treat all forms of hearing loss; read on to gain a better understanding of common causes of hearing loss and contemporary treatment options.

Exposure to Loud Sounds

Excessive exposure to loud sounds is one of the most common environmental causes of hearing loss. This hearing loss may be temporary, as in cases where those who are exposed to sudden explosions find that they are temporarily unable to hear, or it may be permanent. Permanent noise-induced hearing loss tends to be degenerative, especially in those who do not take adequate precautions against it such as wearing ear plugs when they know they will be exposed to loud sounds.

Head Injuries

Head injuries can cause damage to the middle ear or punctures in the eardrum, both of which can lead to hearing loss. As with noise-induced hearing loss, injury-induced hearing loss may be temporary or it may be permanent depending on the nature of the injury sustained.

Acoustic Neuroma

This surprisingly common form of hearing loss is typically accompanied by a feeling of fullness and a ringing in the patient’s ears. Chances of reducing the negative impacts of acoustic neuromas are greatly increased when patients seek medical attention as soon as they notice these symptoms.

Age-Related Hearing Loss

Most of the time degenerative hearing loss that worsens as patients age is due to damage to their inner ears. Wear and tear on the cochlea, which are responsible for sending sound signals to patients’ brains, can eventually cause them to transmit sound improperly. There are hearing aids and assistant devices designed specifically to combat this particular form of hearing loss, so patients should visit an audiologist to discuss their options.

Ear Wax

One remarkably simple and also remarkably common cause of acute hearing loss is the buildup of ear wax in a patient’s ear canal. This wax inhibits the transmission of sound waves, leaving patients struggling to hear. It is, however, entirely curable; the wax must simply be removed to restore normal hearing.