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May Is Better Hearing and Speech Month

 Better Hearing and Speech Month was founded in 1927 by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. It is an opportunity to spread awareness about hearing loss and communication disorders as well as the treatments available that can improve the quality of life for those who live with these challenges.

To help you better understand hearing loss, we have compiled a list of different causes of hearing loss:

  1. Age Related Hearing Loss – As we age, we start to lose the ability to hear high sound frequencies. It usually starts earlier in men than in women, however it can affect teen agers and young children in some cases as well.
  2. Noise Induced Hearing LossNoise induced hearing loss (NIHL) is caused by over exposure to loud sounds. It could be a single instance of a loud noise (gun shot or explosion) or through prolonged exposure to continuous loud noise (loud music or power tools). NIHL can be either temporary or permanent.
  3. Genetic – Hearing loss can be a genetic inheritance. 50-60% of hearing loss in babies is due to genetic causes. An estimated 70% of cases are due to recessive genes, about 15% have dominant causes and the remaining cases include other types of inheritance. (source: Baby Hearing)
  4. Illness – Hearing loss can be a result of illness, including measles, meningitis, autoimmune disease, HIV/AIDS, fetal alcohol syndrome and more.
  5. Neurological Disorders – Neurological disorders can have an effect on hearing as well. Multiple sclerosis and strokes are both risks. With multiple sclerosis the auditory nerve can become damaged, which can cause complete hearing loss in one or both ears. Strokes, depending which nerves are affected, may have either complete or partial hearing loss in one or both ears as a side effect.
  6. Medications – Some medications may have hearing loss as a side effect due to irreversible damage to the ear. These medications are limited in their use for this reason. Other medications can have reversible effects on hearing.
  7. Physical Trauma – Physical trauma can cause temporary or permanent hearing loss. People who suffer from a head injury are vulnerable to hearing loss and/or tinnitus. Halle Berry is an example of this, she lost 80% of her hearing in one ear due to being struck repeatedly in a case of domestic violence.
(source: Hearing Solutions)

The following infographic illustrates other health conditions that may be connected to hearing loss, including: cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s & dementia, diabetes, depression, chronic kidney disease, falling (loss of balance), hospitalization, and mortality. (source: Hearing Solutions)

Have you had your hearing tested lately?

Hearing loss can occur for anyone at any time, either suddenly or over time. Having your hearing tested regularly is one of the first steps to maintaining your own hearing health. Take this quick Hearing Quiz or Online Hearing Test now and get on the road to better hearing health!

Hearing Loss Solutions

Here at Beltone, we have several solutions for hearing loss to help you get back to living a normal life. Take personalized hearing to the next level with the Beltone Legend, and the HearPlus mobile app.

John Cariola, Au.D.
John has been working in the audiology industry since 1983 and has a true love and passion for everything the hearing health world has to offer. He grew up witnessing the British Invasion of The Beatles, The Who, The Kinks, etc. which really means he started out life with sound, really loud sound. And his passion for all sound continues today. John is currently Beltone's Director of Product Management. More About John

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