For most people hearing loss occurs gradually, so you may not notice the signs right away. Some of the most common signs of hearing loss include:
Recent studies have shown that untreated hearing loss affects our emotional and social well-being, our relationships with friends and family, and overall quality of life. For individuals still in the workplace, hearing loss can have a negative impact on income potential as well.
The good news is that hearing loss can be aided. Hearing aid technology has advanced to a point that hearing and communications issues no longer require a lifestyle change and near normal hearing is now possible.
Simply contact us at Mobile Hearing Solutions for a free in-home hearing test. We are proud to offer our services to clients anywhere in the greater metro areas of Hot Springs, Little Rock and Memphis. For prompt, attentive and comprehensive in-home hearing exams, contact us today!
Still have questions? Learn more about hearing loss below.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss is the most common type of hearing loss. It occurs when the tiny hair cells of the inner ear are damaged. Even though sound gets to the inner ear normally, the damaged hair cells are unable to "sense" and provide the required signals to the brain.
In most cases the ear's hair cells that are able to sense sound are damaged. As a result, these damaged hair cells send a distorted message to the brain, making it difficult for you to understand what is heard.
Common causes of sensorineural hearing loss include:
No medical procedure can "reverse" sensorineural hearing loss. However, the loss can be helped with specific frequency amplification such as quality hearing aids. This enables the remaining hair cells to respond with maximum efficiency. For impaired listeners, speech may be both audible and comfortable only over a small range of sound levels.
One of the best solutions is a hearing system which can automatically adjust to different sounds and speakers. This relatively new technology can be programmed to assist you with your individual hearing loss and can be reprogrammed as your hearing needs change.
Conductive Hearing Loss occurs when there is a breakdown in the biomechanical transmission of sound to the cochlea. This type of hearing loss may require medical treatment or surgery for middle ear repair. If treated, normal, unaided hearing may result. Certain conditions may require special devices or surgical implants to restore hearing.
"Sudden hearing loss" is dramatic and upsetting. The term usually refers to sudden onset of "nerve" or sensorineural loss, almost always in one ear only and often accompanied by some dizziness and tinnitus (ear noise). Viral infection, with or without a history of cold or flu, and vascular disruptions from any interruption of the blood supply to the ear are felt to be the most common causes.
But, simple ear wax or barotrama (from changes in barometric pressure following an airplane flight) can cause similar symptoms. Partial or total recovery may occur in a few days or even a few months. In other cases, the hearing loss is permanent. Proper medical and hearing evaluation should be obtained as soon as possible so that diagnosis and immediate treatment can be begun.
To reach the brain, sounds enter your outer ear and strike the eardrum; move through the middle ear system to the inner ear. Vibrations continue deep inside the inner ear, where they pass over 30,000 microscopic "hair-like" cells.
Decibel and duration overloads kill your tiny, non-replaceable "hair cells". This may occur suddenly in an explosion, such as the use of firearms, or gradually, if you don't guard your ears against the source of too much noise.
If noises such as ringing, roaring, hissing or even the sound of "crickets" and "cicadas" bother you - but no one else hears it - you are not alone. Tinnitus is the term for "head noises" ranging from very mild to very loud and so annoying that the victim hears little else. It can be persistent, intermittent, or throbbing, depending on the cause.
Tinnitus does not cause hearing loss, but it often accompanies it. Often tinnitus occurs alone. There are many causes (even ear wax) and a variety of treatment methods. The first step is a professional evaluation, including medical and audiologic evaluations and tinnitus measurements. Only then can recommendations be made to provide relief for the tinnitus sufferer.
Yes, it can! Ear wax is formed about one-third of the way into the ear canal. It is supposed to move out of the ear along with skin cells that move off of the ear drum and migrate out of the ear canal.
However, sometimes too vigorous of cleaning with a cotton swab strips away skin oil and makes the process break down. Blockage can result. Hearing evaluation includes seeing inside your ear using an otoscope which magnifies the ear canal and eardrum. Appropriate follow-up steps can then be taken.
The most advanced instruments contain a computer chip that can be programmed by the hearing instrument professional using a computer. This unique technology offers a better way to accommodate your needs by separating sounds into bands. Each band is then processed separately for greater flexibility and finer tuning. The benefits include:
The noise inside an aircraft, particularly if you are seated toward the rear, can be quite loud. Hearing instruments may be most comfortable if turned down, or off, in this situation. Changes in air pressure, especially when the plane is taking off or landing, can cause discomfort until your ears "pop".
This equalizes the pressure behind the eardrum with the outside air pressure. Usually, wearing your hearing aid will not affect this process. However, if you have a cold or sinus problems, these pressure changes can be harder to equalize and the discomfort may last longer.
There are more than 28 major hearing aid manufacturers each producing quality products. Although some styles are heavily advertised, they may not be the best choice for you. Your best hearing aid is determined by matching your hearing needs, based on hearing tests and your lifestyle or work requirements with the available technology.
In addition, proper "first fit" and periodic adjustment may be required to help you get the best performance from the hearing aid you select.
We've found that Siemens new "binax" technology addresses the difficuly problem of hearing in noise. In fact, Siemens advertises "better than normal hearing in noisy environments". We've tried this technology and can personally attest to this claim.
Quality hearing aids have circuitry that "attenuates" background sounds. They avoid boosting the volume of background noise and focus on amplifiying the voice frequencies. "binax" adds additional focus on transferring sound from ear to ear so a true binaual and directional effect is realized.
These circuits provide a more comfortable listening experience in noisy situations. In other words, there are directional and balanced adjustments that can be made allowing the hearing focus to be forward thereby reducing the effects of sounds behind you. This can be very helpful in high noise environments such as restaurants, crowds, parties, or large groups.
Hearing with two ears or two hearing aids provides several benefits - mainly better speech understanding in noise. When noise is heard with two ears, the brain can "cancel out" some of the noise, but it can't cancel noise coming to just one ear. This results in improved speech discrimination.
Studies have shown that the sum of speech coming into both ears can yield about 30% improvement in speech discrimination (word understanding) over hearing with just one ear. Localization of sound can only be done with two ears so the brain can determine which ear heard the sound first and at what intensity.
Hearing with two ears gives you the ability to hear softer sounds. If a person with normal hearing can just barely hear a sound of 16 decibels (dB) with one ear, that same person could hear a sound of only 10dB with both ears.
We provide the best, name brand, digital products from Siemens, Starkey and Phonak. All styles and powers are available to fit your specific need..
Give us a call today for your FREE, no committment appointment for all of your hearing aid needs!
Chenal Hearing Center
15300 Kanis Road
Little Rock, AR 72223
320 Walnut Bend
Cordova, TN 38018
Other areas by special request.