Listen up! Our Nashville audiologists encourage you not to take healthy ears for granted. Hearing loss typically happens gradually, which is why many people do not realize it is happening until they experience significant symptoms or family members notice. Unlike primary care checkups, eye appointments, and dentist visits, annual hearing tests are not a priority for most people.
Fortunately, Nashville ENT Audiology, in affiliation with St. Thomas Medical Group, is here to help you manage hearing loss, tinnitus, balance disorders, and other hearing healthcare needs.
Common Signs It Is Time For A Hearing Test
- You’re over the age of 60. For many people, hearing loss is part of the natural aging process. If you’re over 60, it is time to make hearing one of your priorities. Simply taking a hearing test every 2 years is an effective first step.
- You have noticed recent difficulty hearing. Are you turning up the television or radio volume louder than normal? Do you find it difficult to follow conversations? Do you mishear people or ask people to repeat themselves when there is background noise? If you experience one or more of these situations, you could benefit from a hearing test.
- You hear sound even when no external noise is present. Tinnitus can present itself as ringing, buzzing, chirping, or whooshing sounds in your ear. Many things can cause tinnitus, including hearing loss.
How Hearing Loss May Affect Your Life
Hearing loss can impact your life in three primary ways. First, people with untreated hearing loss have fewer educational and job opportunities than people with healthy hearing, which has a direct ability on one’s ability to communicate. Second, this impaired communication can lead to social withdrawal as well as reduced access to services. Third, individuals with hearing loss suffer emotional consequences such as a drop in self-esteem and confidence.
Our Nashville audiologists will help you find the right treatment plan. Our solutions include hearing aids, assistive devices, osseointegrated devices, cochlear implants, and rehabilitative education.
Understanding the Two Types of Hearing Loss
If you suffer hearing loss, your doctor will help you determine what kind of hearing loss you are experiencing. “Conductive” hearing loss is characterized by obstructions or malfunctions in the outer or middle ear. Common issues might include a damaged eardrum, impacted ear wax, or an infection in the outer or middle ear.
On the other hand, “sensorineural” hearing loss is attributed to damage to the hair cells in the inner ear. This damage can be caused by the natural aging process, exposure to loud noises (machinery, concerts, etc.), and diseases like meningitis.
Some individuals might experience a mix of conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
Hearing Loss Solutions
Fortunately, advances in medicine and technology have lead to many treatment and management solutions for hearing loss. Our Nashville audiologists will work with you to understand the treatment options available such as hearing aids, surgically implanted hearing devices, rehabilitative education, and much more!