The ageing process leads to a deterioration in our ability to hear clearly. Hearing loss occurs so gradually that it can often be difficult to recognise and understand at what point it is no longer ‘tolerable’ or ‘bearable’. Exposure to high noise levels socially or in the workplace can also damage our hearing over time.

It’s said that a person will often wait around seven years before seeking help for their hearing loss. So what are the catalysts for seeking help? Often comments from loved ones are the first indicators: the comments about ‘selective hearing’ or perhaps the ongoing battle over the television volume. For others it might be the realisation that they are missing out on conversations in noisy environments like restaurants, pubs and crowded rooms.

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The three main types of hearing loss are:

  • Sensorineural

    The hair cells in the inner ear/cochlear become permanently damaged and cannot transmit the sound signals to the brain (age related & noise exposure).

  • Conductive

    The sound cannot pass freely through to the eardrum (middle ear bones) to the inner ear.

  • Mixed

    A combination of a conductive hearing loss and a sensorineural loss

Listening

Listening with a hearing impairment can be incredibly hard work.
It can be extremely tiring when we try to concentrate and listen to others,
and can use up a lot of mental energy.

Hearing loss

Hearing loss can also lead to social isolation, loss of confidence and low mood; adversely affecting our relationships with those around us.

Improving

Improving our hearing ability keeps our brain active and research has found it may delay
the onset of symptoms associated with depression, dementia and Alzheimers.