1. Health
Send to a Friend via Email
Types of Hearing Loss

Presbycusis (prez-bee-KU-sis) is the most common hearing problem in older people. In fact, people over age 50 are likely to lose some hearing each year. Presbycusis is an ongoing loss of hearing linked to changes in the inner ear. People with this kind of hearing loss may have a hard time hearing what others are saying or may be unable to stand loud sounds. The decline is slow. Just as hair turns gray at different rates, presbycusis develops at different rates.

Tinnitus (ti-NI-tus) is also common in older people. Tinnitus is a symptom associated with a variety of hearing diseases and disorders. People with tinnitus have a ringing, roaring, or hear other sounds inside the ears. It may be caused by ear wax, an ear infection, the use of too much aspirin or certain antibiotics, or a nerve disorder. Often, the reason for the ringing cannot be found. Tinnitus can come and go; or it can stop altogether.

Conductive hearing loss happens in some older people when the sounds that are carried from the ear drums (tympanic membrane) to the inner ear are blocked. Ear wax in the ear canal, fluid in the middle ear, abnormal bone growth, or a middle ear infection can cause this loss. Sensorineural (sen-so-ree-NU-ral) hearing loss happens when there is damage to parts of the inner ear or auditory nerve. The degree of hearing loss can vary from person to person. Sensorineural hearing loss may be caused by birth defects, head injury, tumors, illness, certain prescription drugs, poor blood circulation, high blood pressure, or stroke.

Previous Page<<< Table of Contents >>>Next Page 

If you have any questions or comments on senior health nutrition, fitness, etc., go to the Senior Health Forum where we are talking about the following:





Subscribe to the Newsletter
Name
Email

The information contained in these pages
is for educational / reference use only.

Sources:
National Institutes of Health

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.