According to WHO , more than 5% of the world’s population i.e. 466 million people suffer from hearing disability. It is estimated that by 2050, one in every ten people will suffer from hearing disability.
The normal hearing threshold is 25 dB or better in both ears. If a person is not being able to hear as well as someone having normal hearing, then that person is suffering from hearing loss. Hearing loss can range from mild to severe and can affect one ear or both ears.
“Deaf” people are those who suffer from profound hearing loss, which means very little or no hearing.
Types of Hearing loss:
1. Conductive hearing loss:
Here, the problem lies in conduction of sound from external environment to the inner ear, i.e., the problem lies in the external and middle ear.
It can be due to various causes like impacted wax, fungal infections, hole in the eardrum, caries in the bone of the middle ear, fluid in the middle ear, bone growth near the ear ossicles, etc
2. Sensorineural hearing loss:
Here, the inner ear is unable to convert the incoming sound into an electrical impulse and pass it on via the nerve to the brain.
Causes: exposure to loud sounds, viral infections, age related hearing loss, certain drugs, etc.
3. Mixed hearing loss:
It includes causes of both conductive and Sensorineural hearing loss combined.
1. Listening to TV on a louder volume
2. Hard to hear in noisy surroundings
3. Socially distanced from others since they cannot hear anything
4. Asking people to repeat themselves
5. Hissing or ringing sensation in their ears
Since the causes of hearing loss are many, the treatment varies accordingly. Making the correct diagnosis is very important. Treatment varies from Medications, hearing aids to Surgery!