Hearing Difficulty Causes

Causes Grandparents Hearing Difficulty and Grandparenting

Grandparents: Grandparenting and hearing difficulty. Living with hearing impairment.

Family Site Since 1997


What Causes Your Hearing Difficulty? Grandparents and Grandchildren Today

By DH Owens

Grandparents:Living with hearing difficulty or even severe hearing impairment is occasionally part of aging.

What causes that hearing difficulty?

1. Presbycusis is a progressive loss of the ability to hear highfrequencies with age. Hearing difficulty usually begins gradually after the age ofsixty. Over time, the detection of high-pitched sounds becomes more difficult. Both earscan be affected. This hearing difficulty often seems to run in families and isfrequently more noticeable in men than women.

2. Noise-induced hearing difficulty is triggered by exposure to excessive loud noise, whichcan even cause a loud ringing, roaring, or hissing in the ears called tinnitus.

  • Twenty-five percent of the US work force is regularly exposed to potentially damaging noise. Before the mid 1960’s, there were no laws in the U. S. requiring devices to protect hearing and occupational risk of becoming noise-induced hearing impaired was higher. Government standards regulating noise exposure are now in place and may reduce the incidences of noise-induced hearing difficulty in future grandparents..
  • Noise can also cause a reversible hearing difficulty. An example of this is exposure to firedcrackers or gunfire. People may hear ringing in their ears after the experience.
  • Recreational activities are also a source of hearing difficulty. For example, one hour of listening to a portable CD player at 70% of the maximum volume level is equivalent to the peak occupational noise exposure recommended by the government.

3. Viral or bacterial infection can cause hearing difficulty.

4. Head injuries or tumors can cause hearing difficulty.

5. Heart conditions or stroke can cause hearing difficulty.

6. Certain medications can cause hearing difficulty. High doses of aspirin or the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatorydrugs are culprits although hearing difficulty is usually temporary. Even someantibiotics can be toxic to the ear.

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