Is My Hearing Loss Permanent?
Your Body’s Ability to Heal
The human body commonly can heal scratches, cuts, and broken bones, even though some injuries take longer than others. But when it comes to repairing the tiny little hairs in your ear, you’re out of luck. At least, so far. Though scientists are working on it, humans can’t repair the cilia in their ears in the same way animals can. That means you could have irreversible hearing loss if you damage the hearing nerve or those little hairs.
At What Point Does Loss of Hearing Become Permanent?
The first question you think of when you find out you have hearing loss is, will I get it back? Whether it will or not depends on a number of factors. Fundamentally, there are two kinds of hearing loss:
- Hearing loss caused by damage: But there’s another, more common kind of hearing loss that accounts for around 90 percent of hearing loss. This type of hearing loss, which is often irreversible, is known as sensorineural hearing loss. Here’s what occurs: When hit by moving air (sound waves), tiny little hairs in your ears vibrate. Your brain is good at changing these vibrations into the sounds you hear. But your hearing can, as time passes, be permanently harmed by loud noises. Injury to the inner ear or nerve can also cause sensorineural hearing loss. A cochlear implant may help restore hearing in some cases of hearing loss, particularly severe cases.
- Obstruction based loss of hearing: When there’s something obstructing your ear canal, you can have all the symptoms of hearing loss. Debris, earwax, and tumors are just a few of the things that can cause a blockage. Your hearing generally returns to normal once the blockage is cleared, and that’s the good news.
Whether hearing aids will help improve your hearing can only be determined by having a hearing examination.
Treatment of Hearing Loss
So currently there’s no cure for sensorineural hearing loss. But it may be possible to get treatment for your hearing loss. The following are some ways that getting the correct treatment can help you:
- Keep isolation at bay by staying socially engaged.
- Successfully deal with any of the symptoms of hearing loss you may be experiencing.
- Prevent cognitive decline.
- Make sure your general quality of life remains high or is unaffected.
- Preserve and protect the hearing you still have.
This treatment can have many forms, and it’ll usually depend on how severe your hearing loss is. One of the most common treatments is fairly simple: hearing aids.
Why Are Hearing Aids a Good Treatment for Hearing Loss?
People who have loss of hearing can use hearing aids to perceive sounds and perform as effectively as they can. Fatigue is caused when the brain struggles to hear because hearing is hindered. Over time the lack of sensory input has been connected with an increased danger of mental decline. By allowing your ears to hear again, hearing aids help you restore cognitive function. In fact, it has been shown that wearing hearing aids can slow cognitive decline by as much as 75%. Modern day hearing aids can also allow you to focus on what you want to hear, and drown out background noises.
The Best Defense Is Prevention
If you get one thing from this little lesson, hopefully, it’s this: you should safeguard the hearing you’ve got because you can’t depend on recovering from loss of hearing. Certainly, if you get something blocking your ear canal, you can probably have it removed. But that doesn’t mitigate the danger from loud sounds, noises you may not even think are loud enough to be all that dangerous. That’s why it’s not a bad strategy to take the time to safeguard your ears. If you are inevitably diagnosed with hearing loss, you will have more treatment options if you take measures today to safeguard your hearing. Treatment can help you live a great, full life even if recovery isn’t a possibility. To determine what your best choice is, schedule an appointment with a hearing care professional.