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Hearing Loss in Hamilton Township, NJ

Situated in the Central New Jersey region, Princeton Otolaryngology Associates specializes in audiology. If you are located in Hamilton Township and have a problem hearing, come see our audiologists, Karen K. Herring, M.S. CCC-A and Dr. Rajool Dave, Au. D, CCC-A, who can examine your hearing issue, discover its cause and find the optimal treatment.

Many people are shocked to learn that a loss of hearing is not only the third most common health issue in the U.S., but also that this medical complication continues to rise. At the moment, roughly 20 percent of all adults report a certain level of hearing impairment and almost three percent of all children in schools suffer due to some type of hearing impairment. Individuals who are facing these medical problems will instantly recognize a decrease in their enjoyment of life and have trouble having conversations. In some cases, they may even find themselves unable to maintain a career.

What Causes Hearing Loss?

There are many different factors that can cause hearing loss over the years, including old age or genetics and trauma or illnesses. Though hearing impairment has been an issue for all generations of humans, there are many new contributions to this health issue, such as modern prescriptions and a louder environment. Here is a more detailed examination of a few of the most common reasons for hearing impairment that continue to occur in modern times.

Age

Roughly 33 percent of all people between the ages of 64 and 75 deal with some hearing impairment, making it the highest cause of this medical issue. Sadly, after the age of 75, nearly 50 percent of all people have a hearing impairment. Age is seen as the most common cause of hearing impairment, but researchers do not know why age affects one’s hearing, besides the damage and deterioration of soft tissue.

A Noisy Environment

Each day, the typical person is surrounded by a multitude of sounds, such as automobile engines music, and power tools. Eventually, the continuous exposure to strong sounds can start to hurt the ears and will ultimately cause damaged tissue. Currently, the riskiest jobs for hearing loss include musicians, ambulance drivers, carpenters and air traffic controllers. People who work in a place that exposes them to sounds of 85 decibels or louder for a lengthy period of time are at risk.

Various Medications

There are a many types of medication that can result in temporary hearing impairment, a loss of balance and permanent harm to parts of the ears. At the moment, roughly 200 drugs that are being prescribed currently have been shown to harm people’s balance or hearing. The most common prescriptions on the list are chemotherapy medications, loop diuretics, pills for erectile dysfunction, certain types of aspirin and antibiotics.

Sudden Hearing Loss

Only about 4,000 people each year are diagnosed with an unexpected hearing loss that has no obvious cause. This loss includes hearing impairment of at least 30 decibels in only a couple hours or days. In most circumstances, this hearing loss only happens in a single ear.

Trauma

Any trauma to the skull, brain or eardrums can cause worsened hearing or an entire loss of hearing. This normally occurs because the skull is fractured or the eardrum gets punctured.

Illnesses and Infections

If an illness or infection influences blood traveling to the external or internal parts of the ear, hearing loss can occur. Illnesses that are normally linked to hearing loss include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and conditions that expand the body’s construction of ear wax.

The Most Common Symptoms of Hearing Loss

Just as with other senses, such as sight, the deterioration may be so gradual that it goes completely unnoticed. A person might discover that their hearing slowly worsens for a decade or even longer, and it is normally a family member or close friend who first notices the hearing impairment. In some circumstances, there might only be certain sounds or pitches that become hard to hear, such as a lady’s voice, a baby crying, or “F” and “S” sounds. Other common symptoms or signs of hearing impairment are:

  • A whistling or ringing sound (this is often called tinnitus).
  • Constantly having to request that people repeat what they said.
  • Not understanding what people say and responding incorrectly.
  • Feeling that others are always muttering or whispering their words.
  • Other people complaining that the television or music is too noisy.
  • Having difficulty understanding phone conversations.
  • Trouble comprehending a conversation if there are background noises.

Understanding the Levels of Hearing Loss

There are four main classifications of hearing loss, which are mild, moderate, severe and profound. Depending on the main reason for the hearing impairment, a patient might slowly or rapidly go through these stages as they have more and more trouble hearing the world around them.

Mild

Mild hearing loss is normally happening if background noise influences how easily a person can follow a conversation and they miss a few words.

Moderate

During moderate hearing loss, a person may often have to request that others repeat themselves while on the telephone or with any type of background noise.

Severe

Without some type of hearing aid, participating in a normal conversation is basically impossible.

Profound

A person has profound hearing loss if they cannot follow a conversation anymore unless the person is talking very loudly. Without some type of hearing aid or cochlear implant, conversations are not an option.

Effective Hearing Loss Treatment Options

Depending on the severity and reason for the hearing impairment, the problem can be partially treated or the damage can be reversed. In cases such as an illness or small amount of tissue scarring, basic treatments such as starting antibiotics, switching one’s foods or taking certain prescriptions might benefit hearing.

Only about 20 percent of the people who could use a hearing aid utilize them and many people are shocked to discover that their issue might be partly or completely treatable with the technology. If you or a loved one has started seeing any of these symptoms of hearing impairment, our audiologist can educate you about both traditional hearing loss treatment methods and alternative options.

There are now more hearing devices than ever for people who desire to boost their everyday quality of life after dealing with hearing loss. These devices include cochlear implants or sound-increasing devices for televisions, telephones, and radios. Even people with profound hearing loss can benefit from devices and treatments that help them function with the hearing ability that they still have.

Contact Princeton Otolaryngology Associates for a consultation about your hearing if you believe that you might have a hearing issue and need professional testing for hearing damage or loss.

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