Table of contents:
The term hypoacusis refers to the decrease in hearing, the person starting to hear less than usual and needing to speak louder or increase the volume, for example, music or television.
This situation can happen due to the accumulation of wax, aging, long exposure to noise or infections in the middle ear, it is important to consult the otolaryngologist or speech therapist for a hearing evaluation.
The treatment of hypoacusis may vary according to the cause and the degree of hearing loss, and in simpler cases it can be treated with an ear wash, or it may be necessary to take medication, use a hearing aid or perform surgery.
Hypoacusis can be identified through signs and symptoms that appear gradually, the main ones being:
- Need to speak louder,because as the person cannot hear himself, he thinks that other people cannot hear himself either, and therefore speaks louder.
- Increase the volume of music, cell phone or television, to try to hear better;
- Ask other people to speak up or repeat information;
- Feeling that sounds are further away, being less intense than before
The diagnosis of hearing loss is made by a speech therapist or otolaryngologist through hearing tests such as audiometry, which aim to assess the person's ability to hear sounds and know what they heard, which helps to identify which degree of hearing loss.Understand how audiometry is performed.
Hypoacusis can happen due to several situations, the main ones being:
1. Wax Buildup
The accumulation of wax can lead to hearing loss as the ear is covered and the sound has difficulty reaching the brain to be interpreted, there is a need for the person to speak louder or increase the volume of sounds.
Hypoacusis can be associated with aging due to the decrease in the speed with which sound is perceived, which makes the person begin to have difficulty hearing sounds at the same volume as before, needing to increase it.
However, hearing loss associated with aging is also linked to other causes such as exposure of the person for several years to noise or the use of ear remedies, such as antibiotics.
3. Noisy environments
Exposure to noisy environments for several years, for example, in factories or concerts, can lead to hearing loss, as it can cause trauma to the inner ear. The greater the volume or exposure to noise, the greater the likelihood of severe hearing impairment.
Hearing loss may be associated with genetics, that is, if there are other people in the family with this problem, the probability of hearing loss increases, which can happen due to hereditary ear malformations.
5. Middle ear infections
Middle ear infections, such as otitis, can cause hearing loss as the middle ear can become swollen, making it difficult for sound to pass through and giving a sensation of hearing loss. In addition to hearing loss, the person has other symptoms such as fever or presence of fluid in the ear.
6. Ménière's Syndrome
Hearing loss may be associated with Ménière's syndrome because the inner ear canals are clogged with fluid, preventing sounds from passing through. In addition to hearing loss, episodes of vertigo and tinnitus are common. Learn about other symptoms of Ménière's syndrome.
How the treatment is done
The treatment of hypoacusis must be done by the otorhinolaryngologist according to the cause of the hypoacusis, severity and hearing capacity of the person. In the simplest cases, it may only be indicated to wash the ear, to remove the accumulated wax or the placement of a hearing aid to recover the lost hearing. However, when the lesion is in the middle ear, ear surgery can be performed to improve hearing ability. Discover treatments for hearing loss.