Hearing loss can happen for a range of different reasons. Because of this, the best treatment options to help manage hearing loss will vary depending on what is actually the cause of the disorder. Let's take a closer look.
Types of Hearing Loss and Their Treatment:
Conductive hearing loss happens when sound cannot enter the inner ear anymore. This is generally of a temporary nature and fully treatable. For instance, the best treatment options to help manage hearing loss of this kind can be something as simple as syringing the ear, or a course of antibiotics.
Sensorineural hearing loss, whereby there is nerve or inner ear damage, by contrast, is permanent. In this case, the beast treatment options to help manage hearing loss is about improving hearing to a certain degree, and thereby increasing quality of life. So what treatment options exist for this type of hearing loss?
Treatment Options for Sensorineural Hearing Loss:
1. Hearing aids
These are incredibly common in people all over the world. A hearing aid has a loudspeaker, an amplifier, a microphone, and a battery. Any sound that enters the ear is increased in volume. Hearing aids must be fitted by an audiologist, who will also discuss the different aids that are out there and which one will be best for you.
The types of hearing aids, which can be analogue or digital, the latter being the most common, include:
– Behind the Ear (BTE) Aids
– Open Fit Hearing Aids
– Receiver in the Ear (RITE) Aids
– In the Ear (ITE) Aids
– In the Canal (ITC) Aids
– Completely in the Canal (CIC) Aids
– Body Worn (BW) Aids
– Contralateral Routing of Signals (CROS) Hearing Aids
– Bone Conduction Aids
– Bone Anchored Aids (BAHA)
– Middle Ear Implants
– Disposable Hearing Aids
– Cochlear Implants
– Auditory Brainstem Implants (ABI)
2. Sign language and lip reading
Depending on the underlying cause of hearing loss, it may also affect speaking, as well as a person's ability to hear what others say. In this case, you have significant hearing loss, and you will have to learn different ways of communicating. This includes learning sign language, and learning to lip read. Lip reading is very difficult to learn for people who were born with a hearing impairment, as they have never heard a sound. Through sign language, however, someone who is hearing impaired can still communicate.
Hearing loss is quite common in the elderly. In most cases, this type of hearing loss is permanent and degenerative. Fortunately, thanks to hearing aids, they generally do not need to learn sign language or lip reading. It is very rare for this type of hearing loss to develop into full deafness, and ensuring that they have regular appointments with audiologists to ensure their hearing aids are managed properly is usually enough.
To prevent hearing loss, keeping good ear hygiene is very important. This includes never using Q-tips to clean out earwax. All that this can do is push the wax further into the canal, leading to greater hearing loss.
The above are the best treatment options to help manage hearing loss. However, don't forget to consult with your physician who may have several suggestions.