Bright Audiology - Sanford, NC

Woman with hearing loss wondering if her hearing will come back on its own.

The Recovery Capability of Your Body

The human body usually can heal scrapes, cuts, and broken bones, although some wounds take longer than others. But you’re out of luck when it comes to repairing the tiny little hairs in your ears. At least, so far. Animals are capable of healing damage to the cilia in their ears and get their hearing back, but humans don’t possess that ability (though scientists are working on it). What that means is, if you injure these hairs or the hearing nerve, you may have irreversible hearing loss.

When Is Hearing Loss Permanent?

The first question you think of when you find out you have loss of hearing is, will I get it back? Whether it will or not depends on many things. There are two fundamental types of loss of hearing:

  • Hearing loss caused by a blockage: When there’s something obstructing your ear canal, you can show all the signs of hearing loss. This blockage can be caused by a wide variety of things, from debris to earwax to tumors. Your hearing generally returns to normal once the blockage is cleared, and that’s the good news.
  • Damage based hearing loss: But there’s another, more widespread kind of hearing loss that makes up around 90 percent of hearing loss. This sort of hearing loss, which is often permanent, is known as sensorineural hearing loss. Here’s how it works: there are tiny hairs in your ear that vibrate when hit with moving air (sound waves). Your brain is good at changing these vibrations into the sounds you hear. But loud sounds can cause damage to the hairs and, over time, permanently diminish your hearing. Sensorineural hearing loss can also be caused by damage to the nerve or to the inner ear. A cochlear implant can help restore hearing in some cases of hearing loss, especially severe cases.

A hearing exam can help you determine whether hearing aids will help restore your hearing.

Treatment of Hearing Loss

Sensorineural hearing loss presently has no cure. But it might be possible to get treatment for your hearing loss. As a matter of fact, getting the proper treatment for your hearing loss can help you:

  • Ensure your overall quality of life remains high or is unaffected.
  • Prevent cognitive decline.
  • Successfully deal with the symptoms of hearing loss you may be experiencing.
  • Stay involved socially, keeping isolation away.
  • Preserve and protect the hearing you have left.

Depending on how extreme your loss of hearing is, this procedure can take on many forms. One of the simplest treatments is also one of the most common: hearing aids.

How is Hearing Loss Treated by Hearing Aids

Hearing aids help the ear with hearing loss to pick up sounds and function the best they can. Fatigue is caused when the brain struggles to hear because hearing is hindered. As scientist gain more knowledge, they have recognized an increased risk of cognitive decline with a persistent lack of cognitive input. Your cognitive function can begin to be restored by using hearing aids because they allow your ears hear again. In fact, it has been shown that using hearing aids can slow cognitive decline by as much as 75%. Background sound can also be drowned out by modern-day hearing aids enabling you to concentrate on what you want to hear.

Prevention is The Best Defense

Hopefully, if you get one thing from this information, it this: you should protect the hearing you’ve got because you can’t depend on recovering from hearing loss. Certainly, if you get something blocking your ear canal, you can probably have it cleared. But many loud noises are hazardous even though you may not think they are that loud. That’s why it’s not a bad idea to take the time to safeguard your ears. If you are eventually diagnosed with loss of hearing, you will have more treatment possibilities if you take steps now to protect your hearing. Treatment can help you live a great, full life even if recovery isn’t an option. Schedule an appointment with a hearing care professional to decide what your best choice is.

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