Your Hearing

Being able to communicate with others is essential to fully enjoying and participating in the life you were born to live.

Do You Struggle to Hear?

Did you know that once we pass the age of 25, our hearing begins to decline?

In fact, by age 50, nearly one in every two people has difficulty understanding conversation, especially in noisy situations. Hearing loss happens when the hair cells in the inner ear become damaged, and are no longer able to convert vibrations into sound impulses needed by the auditory nerve.

Just how fast hearing declines can be impacted by other factors such as: genetics, over-exposure to loud noises, or injury.

Better Hearing Can Be Yours Today

Many people go untreated either because they are unaware or ashamed of their condition. Now, thanks to revolutionary digital technology better hearing is available. Learn more.

Symptoms of Loss

Even though hearing loss may occur slowly, the impact can be very significant.

Since most hearing loss occurs slowly, the symptoms are often difficult to recognize, or may be overlooked altogether until the hearing loss is more obvious. The most common symptoms of hearing loss include:

  • Feeling as if a speaker is “mumbling”
  • Difficulty understanding words, especially against background noise or in a crowd of people
  • Frequently asking others to speak more slowly, clearly and loudly
  • Needing to turn up the volume of the television or radio
  • Withdrawal from conversations
  • Avoidance of some social settings

While some have put off treatment for any number of reasons, with the significant advances in technology in just the last few years, help is more readily available than ever before.

If you believe that you or someone you know may be suffering from hearing loss, we’d like to help.

Contact us to find a hearing professional near you »

Common Causes

How hearing loss can occur.

Some causes of hearing loss include damage to the inner ear, a buildup of earwax, infections, or a ruptured eardrum. To understand how hearing loss occurs, it can be helpful to understand how you hear.

How We Hear

Hearing occurs when sound waves reach the structures inside our ear, where the sound wave vibrations are converted into nerve signals that our brain recognizes as sound.

Our ears consist of three major areas: the outer ear, the middle ear, and the inner ear. Sound waves pass through the outer ear and cause vibrations at the eardrum. The eardrum and three small bones of the middle ear – the malleus, incus, and stapes – amplify the vibrations as they travel to the inner ear. There, the vibrations pass through fluid in the cochlea, a snail-shaped structure in the inner ear.

Attached to nerve cells in the cochlea are thousands of tiny hairs that help translate sound vibrations into electrical signals that are transmitted to the brain. The vibrations of different sounds affect these tiny hairs in different ways, causing the nerve cells to send different signals to the brain. That’s how we distinguish one sound from another.

Causes of Hearing Loss

  • Damage to the inner ear.
    • Aging and prolonged exposure to loud noise may cause wear and tear on the hairs or nerve cells in the cochlea that send sound signals to the brain. When these hairs or nerve cells are damaged or missing, electrical signals aren’t transmitted as efficiently, and hearing loss occurs. Higher pitched tones may become muffled to you. It may become difficult for you to pick out words against background noise. Heredity may make you more prone to these changes. This type of hearing loss is known as sensorineural hearing loss, which is permanent.
  • Earwax.
    • Sometimes earwax can block the ear canal and prevent the conduction of sound waves. This can cause a conductive hearing loss, which usually can be restored with earwax removal.
  • Ear Infection, Abnormal Bone Growths or Tumors.
    • In the outer or middle ear, any of these can cause hearing loss.
  • Ruptured Eardrum
    • Loud blasts of noise, sudden changes in pressure, poking your eardrum with an object, or an infection can cause the eardrum to rupture and affect your hearing.
Contact us today for more information »

Treatment

For most people with hearing loss, help is available.

Treatment depends on the cause and severity of your hearing loss. A hearing aid may help by making the sounds you need stronger and easier for you to hear.

We can put you in touch with a qualified hearing care professional in your area who can discuss with you the potential benefits of using a hearing aid, recommend the best device, as well as provide the best fitting for you.

Contact us to find a hearing professional near you »