The human body has some amazing and remarkable abilities. The human body usually has no issue repairing cuts, scratches, or broken bones (with a little time, your body can heal the giant bones in your arms and legs).
But you won’t be so lucky if the fragile hairs in your ears are damaged. For now at least.
It’s really unfortunate that your body can pull off such amazing feats of healing but can’t restore these little hairs. So what’s the deal?
When is Hearing Loss Permanent?
So, let’s get right to it. You’re waiting in your doctor’s office and you’re absorbing the news: you’re losing your hearing. So the first question you ask is whether the hearing will ever return. And the answer is… maybe.
It’s a bit anticlimactic, speaking dramatically.
But it’s also a fact. Hearing loss comes in two general forms:
- Hearing loss caused by damage: But there’s another, more prevalent type of hearing loss. Known medically as sensorineural hearing loss, this type of hearing loss is effectively irreversible. This is how it works: there are fragile hairs in your ear that vibrate when struck by moving air (sound waves). When vibrations are transformed into signals, they are transmitted to the brain which makes them into the sounds you perceive. But loud noises can cause harm to the hairs and, over time, diminish your hearing to the point where you need treatment.
- Obstruction induced hearing loss: When there’s something blocking your ear canal, you can present all the symptoms of hearing loss. A wide variety of things, from something gross (earwax) to something frightening (a tumor), can be the cause of this obstruction. Fortunately, once the blockage is removed, your hearing usually returns to normal.
So here’s the main point: you can recover from one type of hearing loss and you most likely won’t know which one you have without getting a hearing test.
Treating Hearing Loss
So presently there’s no “cure” for sensorineural hearing loss (though scientists are working on that). But that’s not to say you can’t get treatment for your hearing loss. In fact, getting the right treatment for your hearing loss might help you:
- Avoid isolation by remaining socially active.
- Reduce mental decline.
- Successfully cope with any of the symptoms of hearing loss you may be going through.
- Preserve a high quality of life.
- Protect and maintain your remaining hearing.
Of the many forms of treatment available, which one is the right choice for you depends on the seriousness of your hearing loss. One of the most prevalent treatments is rather simple: hearing aids.
Why is Hearing Loss Successfully Managed With Hearing AIds?
You can get back to the things and people you enjoy with the help of hearing aids. With the help of hearing aids, you can start to hear conversations, your tv, your phone, and sounds of nature once more. Hearing aids can also take some of the pressure off of your brain because you won’t be straining to hear.
The Best Protection is Prevention
Whether you have hearing loss now or not, you should protect your hearing from loud noises and other things that can harm your hearing (like ototoxic drugs). Your general health and well being depend on good hearing. Having routine hearing exams is the best way to be sure that you are safeguarding your hearing.