We live in a time where we expect all of our problems to be instantly solved. Out of toilet paper? Hit a few buttons on your phone and it will be delivered to you within two hours. Need an air conditioner installed? Hire a handyman quickly and easily from an ap. But what about medical problems?
While it may seem like medicine is advancing at lightning speeds, there are still a lot of conditions that are only in the beginning stages of research. One of those is hearing loss.
Hearing Loss Treatments
To be clear, I am not saying that there are no treatments for hearing loss. In order to put together a treatment plan, your Plano audiologist will need to determine your type and degree of hearing loss.
Hearing loss caused by a problem with the outer ear, ear canal, eardrum or middle ear is known as conductive hearing loss. This type of hearing loss is typically caused by:
- Fluid in the ears
- Malformation or abnormalities of the outer or middle ear
- Impacted earwax
- Foreign object in the ear
- Perforated eardrum
- Benign tumors
Treatment for conductive hearing loss often consists of surgery or medications, in the form of antibiotics.
Hearing loss that occurs because of a problem with your inner ear is called sensorineural hearing loss. It may be caused by
- Noise exposure
- Head trauma
- Aging (presbycusis)
- Viral disease
- Autoimmune ear disease
- Meniere’s disease
- Malformation or abnormality of the inner ear
This is where the treatment for hearing loss gets more complicated. While conductive hearing loss can often be cured, sensorineural is typically permanent. The treatment for this type of hearing loss usually comes in the form of hearing aids.
Last but not leased we have mixed hearing loss. As the name suggests, this type of hearing loss is both conductive and sensorineural. The treatment for this type involve a combination of medication, surgery and/or hearing aids.
How Does a Hearing Aid Work?
It is important to note that while hearing aids are used as a treatment for hearing loss, they do not immediately correct the problem. Unlike glasses, which you put on and your vision is better, hearing aids take some getting used to.
Hearing aids don’t repair the damage to your inner ear. Instead, they amplify sounds so that the working part of your ear can detect and process them.
A hearing aid consists of three parts: a microphone, amplifier and speaker. Sound is picked up by the microphone, which converts them from sound waves to electrical signals. These signals are then sent to the amplifier, which increases the power of the signals and then sends them to the ear through the speaker.
To learn more about what treatment is best for you or to schedule an appointment, contact your Plano audiologist today to get started.