Hearing loss does not discriminate by age or gender and can have a significant impact on an individual’s life. For children, hearing loss can delay speech and language development or interfere with education. It is important to rule out hearing problems in order to preserve quality of life. Adults who have hearing loss can be excluded socially and even experience problems in their careers.
There are three main types of hearing impairment, your audiologist will evaluate your individual type and degree by conducting testing and will make recommendations for the best hearing aid to help you hear better. Your symptoms and medical history will be a guide as to what hearing tests you may need.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss results when part of your inner ear is damaged. This impairment may be caused by:
- exposure to loud noise
- exposure to toxic drugs or medications
Conductive Hearing Loss
Conductive hearing loss is a condition that blocks the delivery of sound through the middle ear. Common diagnoses for conductive hearing loss are:
- Otitis media (fluid behind the eardrum)
- Perforation of the eardrum
Mixed Hearing Loss
Some patients will have a diagnosis of mixed hearing loss. This means that they have a combination of damage caused by sensorineural hearing loss and conductive hearing loss.