There are many different types of hearing loss. Some people suffer hearing loss that is noise-induced, by being exposed to a loud noise once or for an extended period of time. However, a lot of hearing loss is age-related. This is known as presbycusis, and it is a type of hearing loss that develops gradually in us the older that we get. It is actually one of the most common conditions that impact elderly and older adults today. With that in mind, in this blog post, we are going to discuss the average age a person will typically start to experiencing hearing loss in further detail.

Understanding age-related hearing loss

In the United States, roughly every one in three people between the age of 65 and 74-years-old has some form of hearing loss. For those over the age of 75-years-old, around 50 experience troubles with their hearing. When you have difficulty hearing, this can make it challenging to follow and understand the advice of your doctor, as well as hearing smoke alarms, doorbells, phones and responding to warnings. Hearing loss can also result in feelings of isolation because it makes it difficult to speak with friends and family members. 

Hearing loss that is age-related will usually happen in both ears, with both being equally affected. However, this is not always the case. As hearing loss happens gradually, if you have this form of hearing loss, you may not realize right away.

The causes differ as well when it comes to age-related hearing loss, and there are actually many reasons why someone may encounter this. In most instances, age-related hearing loss happens because of changes in the inner ear as we get older. Nevertheless, medications and medical conditions can play a role, as can complicated changes along the nerve pathways from the brain to the ear. Sometimes people also experience changes in the middle ear that causes hearing loss as well.

Why do we lose our hearing as we age?

A lot of different factors contribute to age-related hearing loss. It can be challenging to determine whether you have hearing loss that is related to your age or something else, for example, being exposed to noise over a long period of time.

Hearing loss that is induced by noise is caused because of exposure to an extra loud sound, such as an explosion or long-term exposure to sounds that either last for too long or are too loud. This form of noise exposure can result in the sensory hair cells in your ears becoming damaged. These cells enable you to hear, so they are very important. Once they have become damaged, your ability to hear is diminished because they cannot grow back.

Conditions that are more common in elderly people, for example, diabetes or high blood pressure, can result in hearing loss. There are some medications that can cause hearing loss as well. This is because they are toxic to your ears’ sensory cells. Chemotherapy drugs fall into this category. 

On a rare occasion, you may experience hearing loss that is are-related because of abnormalities in your middle or outer ear. These abnormalities can include the lowered function of the three small bones in your middle ear that transmit sound waves to the inner ear from the tympanic membrane. Another example of this would include the lowered function of the tympanic membrane, which is more commonly known as the eardrum. 

Can you prevent hearing loss that is age-related?

At this specific time, there are not any methods for preventing age-related hearing loss that has been uncovered by scientists. Nevertheless, you can protect your ears from other forms of hearing loss, such as noise-induced hearing loss. Wearing protective items on your ears can go a long way to ensure that you do not end up suffering from hearing problems because of your exposure to different noises.

Contact us at Salyer Hearing Center

If you are worried that you may be experiencing hearing loss, irrespective of how old you are, you should book an appointment with Salyer Hearing Center. You can reach us on any of the numbers below to get the help and assistance that you need. We will help you to determine whether you have hearing loss, and if so, the extent of it. Call us today at:

  • Sylva: 828-586-7474
  • Franklin: 828-524-5599
  • Murphy: 828-835-1014

Our team is friendly and have plenty of experience in the industry, so you have nothing to worry about when picking up the phone!