Aging is a part of life. Although scientists might try, there’s nothing we can do to stop it. With older age comes an increased risk for hearing loss. In fact, approximately 25-33 percent of people between the ages of 65 and 74 have hearing loss, and almost 50 percent of people older than 75 have hearing loss.
There are many causes of hearing loss in Omaha for the elderly, but luckily there are treatment options too. Read below to learn more about why hearing loss is so common among older individuals:
What happens that causes hearing loss when we are older
Traditionally, age-related hearing loss and noise-induced hearing loss were thought to be different. However, new studies are being released that suggest they are more intertwined than we knew. One of the biggest reasons why older individuals may experience hearing loss at a higher rate is simply that they have been exposed to excess noise for a longer amount of time.
There are additional habits and lifestyle factors that can contribute to hearing loss as you age. For example, certain medical conditions like diabetes and heart disease that have a higher prevalence among older individuals have been found to increase the likelihood of developing hearing loss too. Certain medications have also been found to cause hearing loss, High-level doses of certain drugs used to treat cancer or infections can cause ototoxicity. Long-term smoking and family genetics also play a large role in developing hearing loss as you age.
Symptoms of hearing loss
Hearing loss rarely happens over night, it happens over time. So your hearing loss in Omaha may go unnoticed until you are older and you notice these signs:
- Daily noises seem muffled and unclear
- Asking others to repeat themselves a lot
- Turning up the car radio or television volume higher than normal
- Experiencing tinnitus symptoms
- Feeling unengaged in conversation, especially on the telephone or in noisy places
These symptoms combined with hearing loss can lead older individuals to experience feelings of isolation and depression as well.
There is no cure for noise-induced hearing loss, but there are plenty of treatment options someone can use to mitigate the symptoms. One of the most popular treatment options is a hearing aid. Hearing aids work to amplify sounds, and by working with an audiologist, they can be programmed to your specific levels of hearing loss. Assistive listening devices can also be used to help navigate through life with hearing loss. Caption telephones, smartphone apps, and hearing loop systems just scratch the surface of devices that could be helpful to you.
Another option can be taking lip reading classes or working with a specialist to pick up on body movement cues. These skills can help when used in conjunction with hearing aids and assistive listening devices.
Preventative action is also key. Since many hearing losses develop over time from exposure to loud noises, taking care of your ears, listening to things at a healthy volume, and wearing ear protection when necessary can help prevent noise-induced hearing loss when you are older.
Just because you have to get older doesn’t mean you have to accept hearing loss. If you are experiencing hearing loss in Omaha, visit our audiologists at Active Hearing Health! Contact us today to make an appointment.