Information

Hearing Loss in Edmonton

 

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Sensorineural hearing loss occurs when there is damage to the hair cells in the inner ear (cochlea) or to the nerve pathways that lead from the inner ear to the brain. Sensorineural hearing loss is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.

Sensorineural hearing loss may develop as a result of:

  • Injury
  • Age related hearing loss
  • Illness (meningitis, mumps, measles)
  • Significant noise exposure
  • Certain medications
  • Heredity
  • Acoustic Trauma

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Treatment of sensorineural hearing loss may include:

  • Hearing Aids
  • Counselling and education in communication strategies such as lip reading and sign language
  • Assistive listening devices such as amplified telephones, TV listening devices, pocket talkers, FM systems etc.

If this type of hearing loss is very severe, the individual may be a candidate for a Cochlear implant. This is a surgical procedure.

 

Conductive Hearing Loss

Conductive hearing loss occurs when there is a problem in the outer or middle ear that prevents sound from reaching the inner ear. This type of hearing loss may be resolved through medical treatment. If a conductive hearing loss is suspected, a medical referral may be required. Hearing aids may benefit the individual if the conductive loss cannot be treated medically.

Conductive hearing loss may be a result of several factors such as:

  • Excessive ear wax
  • Perforated ear drum
  • Dysfunction of the Eustachian tube
  • Fluid in the middle ear
  • Infection
  • Allergies

 

Mixed Hearing Loss

Mixed hearing loss is a combination of both sensorineural and conductive hearing loss. This means that there may be damage to the inner ear and a problem with the outer or middle ear. Medical treatment may be required for the conductive component, and hearing aids may benefit the individual as well.

 

hearing-aids-collageTinnitus

Tinnitus is defined as the perception of sound in the human ear when there is no actual sound present. This is a common phenomenon associated with several factors and ranges in degrees of severity. Tinnitus is often categorized as “ringing” in the ears, but there are several sounds that can also be perceived such as buzzing, whooshing, humming and clicking. These sounds may be heard in one ear or both ears and can be intermittent or continuous. Tinnitus can be a source of great distress for some people, especially when the tinnitus is severe enough to affect daily functions such as sleep.

As many as 360,000 Canadians suffer from tinnitus. Since tinnitus is subjective like pain, individuals are affected differently by it.

Treatment options for tinnitus include:

  • Masking devices
  • Noise generators
  • Counseling/Psychotherapy
  • Diet changes (avoiding caffeine, alcohol, salty foods)
  • Stress management and relaxation techniques.
  • Support Groups (online or meetings)
  • Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT)

 

Hearing Loss Questionnaire

  Do people seem to speak softly or mumble?

□  Do you often ask people to repeat themselves?

  Do you avoid social situations because it is difficult to hear?

□  Do you become irritable, frustrated or withdrawn in certain social situations?

  Does hearing become more difficult in the presence of background noise?

  Have people around you complained about the TV or radio being too loud?

□  Do you have a hard time understanding someone if you cannot see their face?

  Do you experience ringing or other noises in your ears?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, contact Alberta Hearing Service to book your hearing test today. No doctor’s referral is required.