Conductive hearing loss. It can sound scary but when you take a closer look at what it is and what causes it, you may find that you, your friends, and family have all had it at some point in your lives. In most cases, it is treatable and reversible.
If you’ve been struggling to hear the TV because your ears are blocked up with earwax, that’s conductive hearing loss. If your child isn’t hearing you because of glue ear, that’s also conductive hearing loss. It’s more common than you think.
So what do Audiologists mean when they say, “You’ve got conductive hearing loss?” How is it treated? And what should you do if you’re worried you may have conductive hearing loss?
We’ll be answering all of those questions in this blog.
Conductive hearing loss 101
Hearing normally involves sounds entering your outer ear and passing into your ear canal. These sounds then hit your eardrum, where they are converted into vibrations and then pass into your middle ear. Tiny bones in your middle ear carry these vibrations onto your inner ear. Here, sounds are turned into electrical signals, which are sent to your brain for processing. That is when you finally experience the sounds of the world around you.
Conductive hearing loss interferes with this journey, specifically preventing sounds from reaching the inner ear. This is why conductive hearing loss can be caused by so many different things, as there are lots of steps to go through before sounds finally get to your inner ear.
Common causes of conductive hearing loss include:
- The build-up of earwax
- Ear canal infections
- Perforated eardrums
- Foreign objects in the ear canal
- Glue ear, which is when the middle ear fills with fluid stopping the eardrum from vibrating
- Swimmer’s ear, which causes the ear canal to become inflamed
- Physical changes to the middle ear caused by diseases such as tumors, otosclerosis, and cholesteatoma.
Given the variety of causes of conductive hearing loss, there is also a range of treatments. This can be as simple as removing earwax or taking antibiotics to resolve infections or can involve surgery to treat diseases of the middle ear.
Are you worried that you have conductive hearing loss?
If you’re struggling to follow conversations, hear the TV, or listen to music, then you may have conductive hearing loss. The first thing to remember is that it is treatable and there is help at hand.
The amazing team of Audiologists at Cornerstone Audiology can provide you with a comprehensive hearing assessment in West Texas at any of their centers in Lubbock, Big Spring, or Snyder. All you need to do to take the first step towards healthier hearing is click here to schedule your hearing assessment or why not take the online hearing test now.
Dr. Hubik is the owner and founder of one of West Texas’ most trusted and professional hearing providers, Cornerstone Audiology. She received her bachelor of science degree in communication disorders as well as her doctorate of audiology from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC). In her youth, Dr. Hubik became interested in helping people with hearing loss to communicate more effectively and therefore pursued a degree in this field. Dr. Hubik was born and raised in Anton, Texas and appreciates working with the people of West Texas. She and her team are proud to serve the hearing needs of their community.