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What is a hearing loss

In most cases, the sensation of sound is disturbed on one side during a hearing loss. In this case, the inner ear is affected. Thousands of people suffer from this type of hearing loss every year. The severity of the hearing loss varies from person to person. The cause can not yet be clearly explained and defined by medicine.

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A hearing loss can either be very badly pronounced and lead to a complete hearing loss or only slightly. Sometimes tinnitus also occurs at the same time. If you suspect that you are suffering from a hearing loss, you must act immediately and consult a doctor. Clarify the symptoms immediately. If the hearing loss lasts too long, your hearing can deteriorate severely. Modern hearing aids can support you well.

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What are the symptoms of a hearing loss?

The symptoms can vary in severity for you if you experience a hearing loss. As a result, you may actually experience complete hearing loss. Usually, such a hearing loss occurs in one ear, without there having to be a specific trigger. Tinnitus or pressure in the ear can herald a hearing loss, or occur simultaneously with it.

According to experts, it is nowadays assumed that the auditory cells in the cochlea of the inner ear are not supplied with blood properly, so that a hearing loss occurs. Normally, these cells in the ear convert the sound that is picked up by the ear. As a result, the sound is transmitted to the auditory nerve and then to the brain.

If you have an earache, it's not a typical symptom of hearing loss. If you have pain in one ear or both, there's a reason. It may also be that the clinical picture is different, such as with an infection. If you have attacks of dizziness or hear a cotton-wool-like sound in your ear, this may be an indication of a hearing loss. In about 25% of all cases, cardiovascular problems occur at the same time. Hormonal disorders also often accompany hearing loss.

Typical symptoms of hearing loss:

  • Tinnitus
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  • Ear pressure
  • Weird feeling in the outer tube
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  • Dizziness

Typical accompanying symptoms of a hearing loss:

  • occurs in only one ear
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  • Acts like a seizure
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  • No pain in the ear
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  • occurs without apparent cause
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Other signs may occur, such as familiar voices that sound foreign. The same is true for music that suddenly sounds strange.

Are tinnitus and hearing loss the same?

A tinnitus is not the same as a hearing loss. A hearing loss is actually a disease. A tinnitus, on the other hand, is more of a symptom. Most often, tinnitus is heard at the same time as a hearing loss. In some cases, the tinnitus persists after the hearing loss has been corrected. Then we talk about a chronic tinnitus. Tinnitus does not always necessarily have to be related to a hearing loss.

How do I recognize a hearing loss?

According to the current standards of medicine, a hearing loss is determined with a process of exclusion. With a hearing test and an ear microscopy, the ear, nose and throat doctor narrows down whether you actually have a hearing loss or whether another disease is present.

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Different examination procedures may be used:

  • Nuclear spin examination
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  • Ultrasound examination
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  • Ear microscopy
  • Blood test
  • Blood pressure measurement

So your ear, nose and throat doctor can clarify everything. An otoscopy can also be helpful. There may also be external features, such as an injured ear canal or a blocked ear canal.

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Hearing testing works with either speech audiometry or sound audiometry, or tuning fork testing. With these tests, your doctor can determine the degree of hearing loss and its location.

Classification of a hearing loss:High-frequency hearing loss

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  • Midtone hearing loss
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  • Low tone hearing loss
  • Pancochlear hearing loss

For determination, a tone threshold audiogram helps.

What is pancochlear hearing loss?

It is a hearing loss that affects the entire cochlea. The cochlea is a very important part of your inner ear.

Your medical history

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Your medical history, or history, is a very important component of the overall diagnosis of a hearing loss. With your medical history, your ear, nose and throat doctor learns the important clues about what the reason for the hearing loss could be and whether it is actually such. In this way, the causes can be better narrowed down. If, on the other hand, there are no specific clues on the hearing loss, other methods can be used for a specific diagnosis. These include:

  • Tonaudiometry according to Fowler
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  • Brainstem audiometry (ABR)
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  • Otoacoustic emissions are measured
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On the basis of these examinations, the doctor determines the condition of the auditory nerve. He then may or may not rule out the disease of the auditory nerve as the reason for hearing loss.

What is the Fowler Test?

In this test, you listen to sounds alternately in both ears. The volume is different strengths and is adjusted with your help until you can hear equally well in both ears. This is more or less a subjective hearing test. By comparing it to your healthy ear, the degree of hearing loss and the hearing threshold can be determined.

What does ABR mean?

It measures the vibration of sound that travels from the brainstem to the cerebral cortex. If the vibrations can be measured in the cortex, your doctor assumes your cochlea is fine.

What are otoacoustic emissions?

In this measurement, a probe is inserted into your ear canal. This probe has a microphone and a speaker. When the sound waves enter the healthy inner ear, a response can be measured. This procedure is also practiced on infants.

How is a hearing loss treated?

The most important thing in a hearing loss is time, which you should not lose in any case. The sooner therapy begins, the better. It is best to detect and treat a hearing loss within 24 hours. You should therefore go immediately to an ear, nose and throat specialist or to the clinic. Blood flow to the inner ear is immediately stimulated, and possible triggers are also eliminated right away. Among the most common forms of therapy for a hearing loss include: Circulation-promoting drugs are administered

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If the inner ear is too little blood flow or this blood flow should be disturbed, a hearing loss occurs. The necessary nutrients enter the inner ear with the blood. The blood is also important for the removal of the nutrients. If blood flow is persistently inhibited, the hair cells of your hearing organ will be permanently damaged. Therefore, medications are administered that promote blood flow. In addition, cortisone is usually used. This inhibits swelling.

Blocked nerves and local anesthesia

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Lidocaine or procaine are often used locally for a hearing loss. This blocks the nerves that normally constrict the vessels. The agent must be administered under clinical observation and by a physician.

A hearing aid for persistent hearing loss

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If the hearing loss is persistent, your hair cells and sensory cells will be damaged. As a result, you suffer from permanent hearing loss. However, you can compensate for this hearing loss with a good hearing aid. If the hearing loss has been present for a long time or occurs in conjunction with tinnitus, you should definitely use a hearing aid. This is then equipped with a suitable noiser.

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Oxygen pressure chamber as a treatment option

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Another treatment option for a hearing loss is treatment in an oxygen hyperbaric chamber. This method is extremely effective. However, in medical terms, it is not a clearly effective treatment method.

In a very severe case of hearing loss

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If it is a very severe and serious case of hearing loss, blood washing is used. Purification of the blood occurs. The goal is to stop one's blood from clotting as quickly. The flow properties of the blood are changed and improved. In the worst case, inpatient therapy must be initiated.

Typical risk factors are:

  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Overweight

Sports and a low-fat healthy diet have a very positive effect. In addition, the blood sugar should be well adjusted in a diabetic. Alcohol, coffee and nicotine should be avoided.

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Other alternative therapies

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There are many other approaches to various forms of treatment. However, their effectiveness has not yet been scientifically proven.

A hearing aid for a hearing loss

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  • If your hearing loss occurs at the same time as tinnitus, an appropriate hearing aid can relieve symptoms with a noiser
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  • If your hearing does not come back on its own after the hearing loss, your hearing loss can be compensated for with a hearing aid
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  • By getting a hearing aid, you can train your hearing and help your brain so it doesn't forget the most important sounds
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  • You can better avoid profound hearing loss the sooner you reach for a hearing aid
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The process of a hearing loss

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Time is a major important factor when it comes to therapy for a hearing loss. The time interval between the onset of symptoms and treatment are crucial for a good prognosis. In the best case, appropriate therapy is given within the first hour. This way, your hearing can be restored for the most part. However, if your hearing continues to deteriorate or if you also experience balance problems, the prognosis will be much worse. Two-thirds of people who suffer a hearing loss recover completely. The others may be left with a ringing in the ears or hearing loss. The severity varies.

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What is the treatment after a hearing loss?

Directly after hearing loss, it is important to reduce risk factors. These include, for example: diabetes, cholesterol, blood pressure, obesity.

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It is recommended to make the whole lifestyle without stress. It is essential to avoid situations in which you are overwhelmed. If the hearing loss occurred some time ago - for example, more than a year ago - you can only compensate with a hearing aid. You are welcome to contact our team of experts for a hearing aid.

What complications can occur with a hearing loss?

Various complications related to hearing performance can occur when a hearing loss occurs. The greatest risk is hearing loss, or even deafness, as a result of the hearing loss. This deafness can be short-term or permanent. Late effects are, for example, the typical tinnitus after a hearing loss. Tinnitus can manifest itself in alternating sounds. It is often accompanied by a persistent pressure. Sometimes heart palpitations and a strong inner restlessness accompany a hearing loss.

How does a hearing loss occur?

It is not known what exactly causes a hearing loss. However, there are theories about this in medical science. The blood flow to the inner ear is significantly reduced by a hearing loss. Stress can be a typical trigger for this. High time pressure at work or a hectic environment can lead to such problems of blood flow in the ear and promote a hearing loss.

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Why does a hearing loss occur?

Disturbed blood flow: when the small vessels in the ear have disturbed blood flow, this is a typical cause of a hearing loss. No one can say exactly why a hearing loss occurs. Typical factors for a hearing loss include:

  • Previous acute middle ear infection
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  • Autoimmune disease
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  • Closure of the inner ear and its vessels
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  • Aclogged blood
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  • Cervical spine disease
  • Metabolic disease, such as high cholesterol or diabetes
  • Arteriosclerosis and subsequent circulatory problems
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  • Viral infection, such as chickenpox or herpes
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  • Stress

There may be many more reasons and causes for hearing loss. Specialists are still debating the respective theories.

What is an idiopathic hearing loss?

The technical term means nothing more than having no apparent cause. This situation occurs most often. The reason can not be found even after a specific examination.

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Hearing loss caused by stress

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The most common trigger for a hearing loss is stress. The stress hormone called adrenaline is thought to be responsible. This makes the small blood vessels in the cramp. The cause of the hearing loss itself is not yet known. If you experience a hearing loss, it is important to change your lifestyle habits and reduce stress. Do everything possible to avoid the stress.

We'll help!

You can get a free consultation from us if you have suffered a hearing loss. Possibly it has come with you to a permanent hearing loss. We are happy to assist you with our customer service and offer you a free consultation without obligation. This way, you can choose your suitable hearing aid in peace. Our experts and hearing aid acousticians will be happy to assist you.