Age-related hearing loss, known as presbycusis, is a very common condition. Research shows that one in three adults over the age of 65 has hearing loss.
If you’ve been concerned about your hearing or are worried that a loved one is struggling, it can be helpful to learn about the early signs of age-related hearing loss, as well as the treatment options.
Why Does Hearing Loss Risk Increase With Age?
Presbycusis is a type of sensorineural hearing loss. It’s usually caused due to changes in the inner ear. However, changes in the middle ear and along the nerve pathways to the brain can be causes as well.
These parts of the ear are more likely to change as you age for a variety of reasons. Sometimes, it’s simply a part of the aging process. However, other causes include:
- Continued exposure to loud noise
- Genetic conditions
- Conditions that affect your vascular health such as heart disease or diabetes
- Side effects of certain medications
Early Hearing Loss Symptoms
Age-related hearing loss comes on gradually, which can make it hard to recognize at first. Typically, your ability to hear higher-pitched noises is affected while the ability to hear lower-pitched noises remains intact. Early signs may include:
- Difficulty understanding the speech of others, especially those with higher-pitched voices like women and children.
- Sounds like the microwave beeping or birds chirping become harder to hear.
- Difficulty following conversations in places with multiple speakers or background noise, such as Decker Kitchen.
- Frequently asking others to repeat themselves.
- Listening to the television or radio at a higher volume than previously necessary.
How To Treat Age-Related Hearing Loss
If you or a loved one is experiencing problems hearing, it’s important to schedule a hearing test as soon as possible. These tests can provide quick insight into the severity of your hearing loss and what the best treatment option might be.
In most cases of hearing loss, audiologists will recommend hearing aids. They will help guide you through the various styles and technology features to find out what best meets your needs and fits with your lifestyle.
Hearing aids allow you to enjoy conversations with your partner, delight in the laughter of your grandchildren as they play outside, and experience all the other sounds that bring joy and happiness to your life.
For more information or to schedule an appointment for yourself or a loved one, call Decibel Hearing Services today.