Early on in our journey, Mom’s PCP suggested we see an audiologist to rule out hearing loss. As it turned out, she passed the hearing test with flying colors, but that isn’t always the case. Consider how hearing problems can result in social withdrawal, which may, in turn, exacerbate cognitive decline. I’m pleased to share this guest post by Melanie Lewis of Hearing Direct.
There are various causes that contribute to hearing loss. Many people are aware of the corollary links between noise exposure and hearing damage. Both the intensity level (noise above 85dB(A) is considered ‘harmful’) and the length of exposure time can put one’s hearing at risk.
Factors affecting the transmission of sound through the outer or middle ear are also common causes of conductive (and often temporary) hearing loss – this is largely seen in blockages of the ear canal due to wax or other foreign bodies, susceptibility to outer or middle ear infections, Eustachian tube dysfunction or previous ear surgery. Notwithstanding these examples however the most common type of hearing loss and perhaps surprisingly so, is in fact sensorineural in nature and due to natural deterioration brought about by age. Continue reading