What's Causing My Hearing Problem?

What's Causing My Hearing Problem?

If you’ve noticed you’re having trouble hearing people or sounds, like the telephone or doorbell, you’re not alone. Nearly 40 million Americans struggle with hearing loss. But knowing you’re in good company doesn’t explain the underlying trigger of your hearing impairment. 

Board-certified ear-nose-throat (ENT) providers, Charles Greene, MD, PhD, and Tara Condrey, PA-C, at Jacksonville ENT Surgery are sorry to learn you’re having trouble hearing. We understand the frustration that comes with hearing loss — especially when you’re uncertain about the cause. 

At our three offices in Jacksonville, Florida, and office in Lake City, Florida, we specialize in diagnosing and treating hearing loss resulting from many different causes. To get to the bottom of your hearing loss, it’s important to talk to an expert who can test your hearing and make customized recommendations.

We’re also dedicated to making sure our patients have the information they need. That’s why our team created this helpful guide, highlighting some of the causes of hearing loss and how we can help. 

Why am I having trouble hearing?

Adults generally experience two types of hearing loss: sensorineural and conductive. Some people have both types of hearing loss and are diagnosed with mixed hearing loss. 

Sensorineural hearing loss is the most common and occurs when the hair cells and nerves of the inner ear are damaged. Conductive hearing loss occurs when something obstructs the outer or middle ear. 

Hearing loss isn’t usually due to any one factor. Instead, the impairment is usually related to multiple factors, including the type of hearing loss you’re experiencing and one or more of the following:

You may also experience hearing loss if you’ve been exposed to certain medications, chemicals, and so on, that result in issues with hearing. Several hundred of these ototoxic agents exist, so if you’re worried about exposure it’s best to talk to a hearing specialist at Jacksonville ENT Surgery.

What should I do if I’m having trouble hearing?

Uncovering the root causes of your hearing loss is an important step in creating an effective treatment plan. At Jacksonville ENT Surgery, we use an integrated approach to diagnosing hearing loss with both physical and audiological exams. 

During your physical exam, your provider examines your ear using special tools. Your audiological exam, or hearing evaluation, includes different tests that check your hearing and measure the degree of impairment. 

Most hearing evaluations begin with two tests: pure tone testing and speech testing. Based on the results of these tests, your provider may recommend additional hearing tests, including:

With the information from your physical and audiological exams in hand, your provider creates a customized hearing loss treatment plan that may include noise-protection ear molds that filter out certain frequencies allowing you to hear most sounds better or hearing aids that magnify sounds as needed. 

Learn more about hearing loss and how we can help by scheduling an appointment online or over the phone at the Jacksonville ENT Surgery location nearest you. 

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