The human body has some amazing and surprising abilities. Scratches, cuts, and broken bones are generally no problem for the human body to heal (with a little time, your body can restore the huge bones in your arms and legs).
But you won’t be so lucky if the delicate hairs in your ears are damaged. At least, so far.
It’s really unfortunate that your body can pull off such great feats of healing but can’t regenerate these little hairs. What’s happening there?
When is Hearing Impairment Permanent?
So, let’s get right to it. You’re waiting in your doctor’s office and you’re absorbing the news: you have hearing impairment. So the first question you have is whether the hearing will ever return. And the answer is… it depends.
Dramatically speaking, it’s a little anticlimactic.
But he’s not wrong. Hearing loss comes in two general forms:
- Hearing loss caused by a blockage: You can show every indicator of hearing loss when your ear has some kind of blockage. This blockage can be caused by a wide variety of things, from the gross (ear wax) to the downright scary (tumors). Fortunately, once the obstruction is cleared, your hearing usually goes back to normal.
- Damage related hearing loss: But hearing loss has another more prevalent type. This form of hearing loss, called sensorineural hearing loss, is irreversible. This is how it works: inside of your ear, there are little hairs that vibrate when struck by sound waves. Your brain is good at turning these vibrations into the sounds you hear. But loud sounds can cause damage to the hairs and, over time, diminish your hearing to the point where you require treatment.
So the bottom line is this: you can recover from one form of hearing loss and you probably won’t know which one you’re coping with without having a hearing test.
Treating Hearing Loss
Scientists haven’t discovered a “cure” for sensorineural hearing loss but they’re working on it. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get treatment for your hearing loss. In fact, getting the correct treatment for your hearing loss might help you:
- Remain active socially, keeping isolation away.
- Reduce cognitive decline.
- Protect and maintain your remaining hearing.
- Make sure your general quality of life is untouched or remains high.
- Successfully cope with any of the symptoms of hearing loss you might be going through.
This treatment can take many forms, and it’ll usually depend on how severe your hearing loss is. One of the most common treatments is rather simple: hearing aids.
Why is Hearing Loss Successfully Managed With Hearing AIds?
Hearing aids can help you return to the people and things you enjoy. They can help you hear the discussions, the phone, your television, or even just the sounds of nature. Hearing aids can also take some of the pressure off of your brain because you will no longer be struggling to hear.
The Best Protection is Prevention
Loud noises and other things that would damage your hearing should be avoided and your ears should be safeguarded against them. Your general health and well being depend on strong hearing. Regular hearing care, such as annual hearing exams, is just another type of self-care.