Hearing loss seems to be stereotypically applied to older adults, summoning up images of massive hearing aids and constantly asking people to repeat themselves. It may surprise you to learn that there are several different kinds of hearing loss, some tied directly to the aging process. If you find yourself frequently turning up the volume on the T.V., have a hard time hearing on the telephone, or feel like everyone around you is mumbling, you may be experiencing hearing loss.
According to the National Institute of Health, hearing loss affects 1 in 3 people between the ages of 64-75 experience hearing loss, shifting to half of the population at the age of 75 and older. Age-related hearing loss, also called Presbycusis, occurs gradually and in both ears. In this case, it may be beneficial to visit an audiologist to explore the depth of your hearing loss and see what aids may be available.
Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound waves cannot reach the inner ear. The cause may be earwax buildup, fluid, or a punctured eardrum. Medical treatment or surgery can usually restore conductive hearing loss.
Tinnitus, or ringing in your ears, is a common complaint among older adults. Tinnitus can be caused by certain medications, allergies, and even high blood pressure. Tinnitus may be loud or soft and generally occurs prior to hearing loss taking place. If you experience any of the above, speak to your health care provider to work on a plan for your hearing.