Monday, September 30th, 2013
Affecting roughly one third of Americans aged 65-75, hearing loss is an irreversible condition that can occur gradually, over time. It’s even estimated that half of all those aged 75 and up have experienced at least some degree of hearing loss. So what exactly is responsible for this loss of hearing?
While hearing loss is considered part of the natural aging process, there are a number of other risk factors that can contribute. Explore some of the most common risk factors for hearing loss, borrowed in part from the Mayo Clinic.
Top 5 Risk Factors for Hearing Loss in Adults
- Occupational noises. Those who have spent time working in loud environments are at a greatly increased risk for hearing loss as they age. These loud workplaces typically include factories, construction sites, and anything involved prolonged exposure to loud equipment.
- Recreational noises. There are a number of activities people partake in that can be damaging to their hearing, like listening music too loudly, motorcycling, using fireworks, shooting firearms, and more.
- Medications. Certain medications can actually cause damage to the inner ear, and others may cause more temporary hearing damage. Certain chemotherapy drugs, gentamacin, high doses of aspirin, and some pain relievers can all be factors in the eventual loss of hearing.
- Heredity. Like many other conditions and illnesses, genetics may play a role in hearing loss. It's even estimated that half of all cases of hearing loss are due to genetic factors.
- Illnesses. Certain infectious diseases – like mumps, measles, and meningitis – can lead to hearing loss down the line. If you’ve suffered from any of these conditions, you may be at an increased risk.
While there is no treatment for hearing loss, there are some ways in which hearing may be able to be restored. Hearing aids and cochlear implants are proven solutions that can help adults regain hearing that has been lost with time. If your hearing has gotten worse with age, contact your doctor today to find out more about what your options are.
Board Certified Physician in Astoria
To learn more about hearing loss in adults or to find out what your treatment options are, contact us today and schedule an appointment. Our offices are located in Astoria, and we can be reached at (718) 204-7550. We hope to hear from you soon.