What Causes Hearing Loss? - Beltone California Hearing Aids

What Causes Hearing Loss?

Restore your Hearing Health with Beltone Central California

Our ability to hear well is critical to our quality of life. Hearing loss can have a significant effect on a person, sometimes even causing feelings of depression. When hearing loss makes conversations difficult, it can lead to social withdrawal and even isolation. Researchers have shown hearing loss is also associated with cognitive impairment and decline. But what causes hearing loss, and why does it affect so many people? Read on to learn more about the causes of hearing loss, and how Beltone can help you restore your hearing health.

Hearing loss is a very common condition throughout the United States. About one-third of Americans between the ages of 65 and 75 have some degree of hearing loss; for Americans older than 75, that number is approximately 1 in 2. The most common type of hearing loss, known as presbycusis, is hearing loss that occurs gradually as you age, but hearing loss can also be caused by chronic exposure to loud noises, a sudden rupture of the eardrum, or other factors, such as an excessive amount of earwax. Generally, hearing loss is categorized as one of three types, conductive, which is hearing loss that involves the outer or middle ear; sensorineural, hearing loss that involves the inner ear; and mixed, which is hearing loss that involves a combination of each. 

The known causes of hearing loss result from damage or poor conditions within the ear. One of the most common causes is damage to the inner ear, which can be caused by aging or exposure to loud noises. In this case, hearing loss occurs when the hairs or nerve cells in the cochlea are damaged or missing, causing electrical sound signals to the brain to not be transmitted as efficiently. People with hearing loss due to damage in the inner ear may find that it is difficult to pick out words against background noise, and higher pitched tones may sound muffled.

A ruptured eardrum is another cause of hearing loss. A ruptured eardrum (tympanic membrane perforation) may occur due to loud blasts of noise, sudden changes in pressure, poking the eardrum with an object, or infection. Any of these events may cause the eardrum to rupture and will have a significant effect on hearing. Additionally, hearing loss can occur in the outer or middle ear when there is an ear infection or abnormal bone growths or tumors. Lastly, a gradual buildup of earwax can significantly impair hearing. Earwax can block the ear canal and prevent conduction of sound waves.

Most types of hearing loss are not reversible. However, there are steps you can take to improve your hearing. The friendly folks at Beltone can help you determine what is causing your hearing loss and how you can best restore your hearing health. At Beltone, you can receive a complimentary hearing evaluation, which includes a video ear scan, a comprehensive audiometric hearing test, and a personalized hearing health assessment, valued at $275 and offered at no cost to you. Beltone’s hearing specialists will work closely with you, taking into account factors such as your lifestyle, budget, and degree of hearing loss, to determine which hearing solution will work best for you.  

Come in to your local Beltone Central California office today to find out how you can improve your hearing health, no matter the cause of your hearing loss. At Beltone you will find a full range of assistance with hearing instruments, with live hearing aid demonstrations, same-day hearing aid repairs and servicing, and warranty repairs. Beltone has six offices to serve the Central California region, Fresno, Hanford, ModestoOakhurst, Sonora, and Visalia. Call us today at (559) 981-8894 to speak with our friendly staff or click here to schedule an appointment for a free hearing test today!