Age-Related Hearing Loss – Causes, Symptoms & Treatments!
Many seniors experience some form of partial hearing loss as they age. The correct terminology for age-related hearing loss is presbycusis.
Presbycusis affects every third adult over 65 years of age. Symptoms gradually set in and are often ignored at first. But at some point you may have difficulty hearing some high-pitched noises like a microwave beeping or a phone ringing.
How does age affect hearing?
Causes of Age-Related Hearing Loss
- Most often, presbycusis develops due to problems with the inner ear
- Sometimes problems in the nerve pathways from the brain to the ear or some problems in the middle ear can also lead to hearing loss
- Some people who have been continuously exposed to loud noise throughout their adult careers may also develop age-related hearing loss
- In some cases, age-related hearing loss is hereditary and runs in families
- Certain health conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes can also affect hearing
- Sometimes the loss of hair cells can lead to a reduction in the number of hair cells in the inner ear and lead to hearing impairment
- Some medications, such as aspirin and specific antibiotics, can also affect hearing in older adults
Most of these symptoms appear with age and may increase in severity as the senior ages.
Symptoms of age-related hearing loss
🔺The senior’s adult may become indistinct or indistinct
🔺You may have difficulty having a conversation when there is background noise
🔺Adults with presbycusis have difficulty distinguishing the pronunciation of different high-pitched sounds such as ‘s’ or ‘th’
🔺People with age-related hearing loss will generally understand male voices better than female voices
🔺A senior with presbycusis may even experience tinnitus, a kind of sudden ringing in the ear even when there is no sound outside
🔺People with age-related hearing loss also often hear certain specific noises as too loud or irritating
Treatment of age-related hearing loss
Age-related hearing loss usually begins as partial hearing loss. Most adults ignore it at first. But if you’re not careful, you can experience full blown hearing loss in both ears.
Therefore, it is very important to seek professional medical help for those who begin to have difficulty hearing. However, in the event of a sudden onset of significant hearing loss, it is very important to see a doctor right away as it can be a symptom of a more serious underlying health condition.
Age-related hearing loss is usually diagnosed by doctors by examining the eardrum with the help of an otoscope. Audiograms are also done to test the extent of hearing loss in adults.
🔰Medications and procedures to treat hearing loss in older adults are usually prescribed based on the age and general health of older adults
But the most commonly recommended form of treatment for hearing loss in older adults is hearing aids. These devices are non-invasive and can significantly improve the quality of life of older adults
Sometimes doctors recommend some medical aids, such as telephone amplifiers, for those who have a milder form of hearing loss
Doctors also teach methods to older adults prevent wax from building up in your outer ear so that their hearing is not impaired
Some doctors recommend training seniors to record visual cues so they can continue conversation even if they don’t understand all of the words
Age-related hearing loss cannot be completely cured. But doctors and medical devices can restore human hearing to a great extent. Doctors also recommend that people who work for hours in a noisy environment should use good liquid-filled noise-canceling hearing protectors or earplugs while working to avoid damaging their eardrum.
Hearing loss in older adults is a common problem that can seriously affect their quality of life. But with the right attention from their caregivers, timely medical help can be sought and the problem largely resolved.
You may also read: The Safest Ways To Clean Your Ears And Keep Your Ears Healthy?
Thank You For Reading!