causes of hearing loss

It may come in many forms, from being unable to hear high-pitched sounds to total loss of hearing. Yet of the different types of hearing loss, over 90% is sensorineural; hearing impairment or deafness in which the root cause lies in the inner ear or sensory organ.
People with hearing loss may find it frustrating to follow a conversation, and more gravely, difficult to hear warning signs of danger. In today’s blog, our staff at CareMalta take a look at some of the various causes of hearing loss.


1. Ageing

Much of hearing loss is age-related, but as this type of loss occurs gradually, and typically in both ears, it’s sometimes difficult to recognise until symptoms become severe. This can happen as a result of changes in the middle ear or along the nerve pathways that lead to the brain. Known in the medical world as presbycusis, such hearing impairment seems to run in families.


2. Genetics

Genetic factors make people more susceptible to developing hearing problems, though it doesn’t necessarily mean it will show up from birth – some forms can appear later on in life.


3. Exposure to loud noises

Exposure to a one-time loud noise, such as a blast, or to loud sounds over an extended period of time can cause Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). How do you know if something is too loud? If you have to shout to be heard or your ears ring after attending a concert or party, those are signs that you are at risk.


4. Injuries & Health Conditions

There are various medical conditions associated with the loss of hearing. Having a stroke, heart condition or brain tumour are but a few of them.


Sensorineural hearing loss is usually permanent, however, individuals affected may benefit greatly from a hearing aid, or in cases of severe hearing loss, a cochlear implant – an electronic hearing device. However, there are many other causes of hearing impairment, some of which are temporary (such as excessive earwax). It’s therefore important to seek professional advice from a specialist if you or a loved one have noticed a deterioration in your sense of hearing.


In all nine of our retirement homes in Malta, run by CareMalta, our dedicated staff are trained in providing the best care for the elderly Malta has to offer to put your mind at rest.

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