Undertanding Hearing Problems And Available Solutions

According to estimates from the Center for Hearing and Communication, approximately 12 percent of Americans suffer from significant hearing problems. Another statistic says that a person will wait an average of seven years before going to a doctor to get help with a hearing issue.

Any problem that affects one of the five senses, which we need for basic survival, is something that is an urgent health concern and should be corrected as soon as possible. Learn about common hearing problems and the solutions that doctors suggest to correct them.

Common Hearing Problems

Common hearing problems include ear infections, inflammation of the ear (also called otitis), progressive hearing loss due to abnormal bone growth inside of the ear (also called otosclerosis), age-related ear problems and sudden hearing loss. The worst-case scenario of an ongoing hearing problem is complete deafness.

Types of Hearing Loss

There are two main types of hearing loss that patients may experience: conductive and sensorineural. Conductive hearing loss is a disorder related to the inner ear while sensorineural hearing loss happens when hair cells inside of the ear become damaged. It is also possible to have a mix of the two conditions.


Hearing problems are commonly the result of an outside factor, such as noise that causes damage to an eardrum. This is why you should avoid listening to very loud music or noises for extended periods of time. Some hearing issues are simply the result of aging or heredity. Heart disease, high blood pressure and similar conditions can also cause complications. Certain medications have been known to cause hearing problems. A trauma, such as a hard hit to the side of the head, can also cause someone to lose his hearing. Finally, an infection of the ear or too much wax can obstruct someone’s ability to hear clearly.

Signs of Hearing Issues

If you have to frequently ask just about everyone to repeat themselves when speaking to you in the same room, especially in close proximity, that’s one possible sign of a hearing problem. If you can’t hear over background noise or feel that everyone is mumbling around you, that’s a symptom of hearing loss. Any strange prolonged ringing sound in the ears is also a cause for concern.

Solutions for Hearing Problems

Doctors treat hearing problems depending on the cause, condition and severity. Some mild to moderate hearing problems are reversible and require surgery to correct the damage. Many infections can be treated with antibiotics and other medications. For more serious ear problems that cannot be reversed, a doctor will most likely prescribe a hearing aid or amplifying device as well as therapy to help you cope with losing your full ability to hear.

If you’re worried about possible hearing loss, ringing in the ears or a similar problem, see your doctor today to discuss possible solutions. Having the issue resolved early on could save you from a lifetime of having to constantly ask “can you repeat that?”

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