Maintaining Good Health Even When You're Busy

What You Should Know About Mild Hearing Loss

by Caitlin Obara

Hearing loss comes in many different forms and levels, from temporary hearing loss due to trauma to the ear to hearing loss caused by damage or genetic conditions. Mild hearing loss is among the most common types of deafness. Here are some things to know about this level of hearing loss.

What are the different causes?

Mild hearing loss can be temporary or chronic, depending on what caused it. There are quite a few things that can lead to this type of hearing loss, which might either mean having it treated or wearing hearing aids. Some causes include:

  • Having fluid in the ear
  • Malformation of the ear structures
  • Obstruction or wax in the ear
  • Benign tumor
  • Perforated eardrum
  • Severe allergies
  • Ear infection

Are there symptoms?

With mild hearing loss, it is often such a gradual change that you don't notice it at first. One good way to tell if you are losing your hearing is by paying attention to your daily habits and how they might have changed. For example, you might need to ask someone to repeat themselves multiple times, even though it seems like others around you can hear them just fine. You might find that you are turning up your television volume louder than ever before, or voices from friends and family seem quieter.

You can also test your hearing with a pair of foam earplugs. Be careful when using them and don't push them in too far. Don't do this test if you have severe pain or an infection in your ear. Put in the earplugs and turn the television to a reasonable volume. If you can hear the television, at least faintly, you probably have normal hearing. However, if the television is completely silent, you might have some mild hearing loss.

What are the treating options?

If you suspect you are experiencing mild hearing loss, the first thing you should do is contact a doctor and get a hearing test performed. The doctor will then provide treatment based on your symptoms. The cause of your hearing loss determines the right treatment option. If you are experiencing hearing issues due to a medical condition, such as allergies or an infection, that condition is treated. Hopefully your hearing returns to normal. The same can be said for earwax or an obstruction in the ear. In other cases, you have hearing loss due to genetics, damage to your eardrum, or the aging process. In these cases, you will most likely be fitted for a hearing aid.

For more information about hearing tests and hearing aids, contact a company like Otolaryngology Plastic Surgery Associates PC.