Hearing loss presents itself in four basic forms. Some of the auditory loss is fixable, and in others it's permanent. When the hearing loss is permanent, there aren't medications or surgeries that will repair the damage. Hearing aids are the best option. Get more information about the different types of hearing loss and what assisted technologies are available to those with lasting damage.
The 4 Types of Hearing Loss
1. Conductive Hearing Loss
The ear is made up of three parts: the outer, inner, and middle ear. Conductive hearing loss means sound cannot travel from the outer and middle ear. Loud noises are often muffled, and soft sounds are difficult to hear. Many patients who have conductive hearing loss can take medication or undergo surgery to have it fixed.
2. Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) is damage to the inner ear and the most common type of permanent hearing loss. Nerve damage to the pathways from your inner ear is probably the most prevalent reason for SNHL. Medications and surgery don't help treat SNHL. But, hearing aids can make improvements. Those with this form of auditory loss find it difficult to hear soft noises, and loud can be muffled.
3. Mixed Hearing Loss
Mixed hearing loss is a combination of SNHL and conductive. Issues are present in all three quadrants of the ear making it challenging to decipher sounds. The cause would be some combination of issues relating to the inner, outer, and middle ear. An example could be a musician continually listening to loud noises with a malfunctioning Eustachian tube. A trip to a specialist and an auditory test can confirm.
4. Auditory Neuropathy
The cochlea is a spiral cavity located inside the inner ear. It contains the organ Coti. When sound vibrations present themselves, it produces nerve pulses. Auditory neuropathy occurs when there is an issue with the nerves. The sound enters the ear normally, but because of the damage, the brain can't organize the information as sound. The loss can vary in severity. But, most who have it have trouble understanding speech when there is background noise. Causes would include some neurological condition, jaundice or lack of oxygen at birth. Hearing aids are beneficial to those with auditory neuropathy.
Hearing Aid Options
Patients with SNHL and mixed hearing loss benefit from the use of assisted technologies. Internal ear damage is irreversible. Hearing aids make improvements. Many products exist today to make it easier and more comfortable for the wearer. Sometimes so many choices make it harder to decide what you need and what you don't need.
Pre-Made Hearing Aids
A pre-made hearing is a standard, manufactured device that comes in a particular size and shape. They are designed to help the individual who suffers from either hearing loss or tinnitus. Don't be thrown by "standard." Nothing about these devices are conventional. You can find them in almost any shape such as in-ear, behind the ear, and amplifiers.
Custom Hearing Aids
Some individuals may find that they need a little more from their hearing aid. Custom made options are available in these instances. They go a step beyond the pre-made. A mold is taken of your ear to create the ultimate comfort. You can also have it constructed with materials suited to your needs and to increase the experience. Going custom works best for those who have auditory issues and need to hear for their job.
Hearing Aid Technology
You can get the most out of your experience by choosing different technologies for your hearing aids. Both pre-made and custom offer a lot of options to improve your lifestyle. Depending on which brand you want, you could mix and match your technology to fit your needs.
Binaural processing allows the devices to communicate with each other. It's beneficial for the wearer because it means there is less time adjusting for better listening.
Almost everything is wireless these days and so are hearing aids. Wireless connectivity will let you sync to your smart devices and TV. Many brands have an app the will let you make adjustments through your phone or tablet.
A hearing aids purpose is to make it easier for the wearer to hear noises. All brands are doing their best to develop stereo to make the experience more natural for audio streaming.
Reduction in Background Noises
The first hearing aids worked wonders helping individuals regain the ability to decipher sounds. However, they suffered from a lot of background noises or lag. Today's models have made improvements to cut back on these issues.
Hearing Aids Nashville
There are a lot of things to consider when you are purchasing hearing aids for yourself or a loved one. You'll need to determine what style, and technology you want. But, there's also pricing to consider and what brands offer reliable auditory streaming.
At OAT, we want you to get the most out of your experience. So, we created a guide to help you find the right solutions. You can download our FREE ebook "Hearing Aids Options & Cost" for more information.