Why Do We Lose Hearing as We Get Older?

Age-related hearing loss is not an unusual occurrence.

Age-related hearing loss is not an unusual occurrence.

As we get older, it’s not unusual to experience some amount of hearing loss. This phenomenon is called presbycusis. Often times hearing loss begins in our 30’s and 40’s, though some people experience hearing loss sooner than others. Over half of individuals aged 80 suffer from hearing loss. Hearing loss makes it more challenging to respond to our surroundings and take part in conversation. Often times this can lead to a feeling of isolation, and is why it’s so important to identify and treat hearing loss as early as possible.

Age-Related Hearing Loss

Tiny hair cells within your inner ear are what enable our ability to hear. These cells pick up sound waves and convert them into nerve signals that the brain can interpret as sound. Because these cells do not regrow, hearing loss occurs when they are damaged or die. As such, age-related hearing loss is most commonly caused by gradual changes within the inner ear as we grow older. Long-term exposure to loud environments can damage these sensory cells, but conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes may also play a role. For most people, age-related hearing loss is a combination of genetics and noise exposure.

Symptoms of Age-Related Hearing Loss

Do you have trouble hearing what other people are saying to you? A common first sign of presbycusis involves difficulty identifying high frequency sounds that are commonly used in parts of speech. These high frequency sounds consist of consonants such as S, T, K, P and F. Other symptoms include hearing men’s voices more clearly than women’s, ringing in your ears, dizziness, slurred voices or difficulty hearing in noisy environments. Consult your hearing professional immediately if you’re experiencing one or more of these symptoms.

Treating Age-Related Hearing Loss

While there is no immediate cure for presbycusis, there are a number of things that can be done to assist people with hearing loss. Hearing aids are specifically designed to help improve one’s hearing by amplifying sounds. Telephone amplifiers and other assistive devices can also help. The first step toward treating age-related hearing loss is to schedule an appointment with your hearing professional.

Better Hearing Starts with Canary Hearing

Are you experiencing hearing loss? Canary Hearing can help. We are a family owned and operated hearing aid dispensing practice with over 40 years of professional hearing correction experience. Our full time hearing care professionals can assist you in selecting and fitting the right hearing aids  to help you start living  life to the fullest. Get in touch with Canary Hearing today or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

You can also find us at our two Maryland locations:

  • Annapolis: 130 Holiday Court, Suite 105 Annapolis, MD 21401 (410-224-4327)
  • Easton: 8262 Ocean Gateway Easton, MD 21601 (410-822-4327)


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