Slides in this set
Age-related hearing loss
Age-related hearing loss, or presbycusis, is the
slow loss of hearing that occurs as people get
Tiny hairs inside your ear help you hear. They pick
up sound waves and change them into the nerve
signals that the brain interprets as sound. Hearing
loss occurs when the tiny hairs inside the ear are
damaged or die. The hair cells do not regrow, so
most hearing loss is permanent.
There is no known single cause for age-related
hearing loss. Most commonly, it is caused by
changes in the inner ear that occur as you grow
older. However, your genes and loud noises (such
as from rock concerts or music headphones) may…read more
The following factors contribute to
age-related hearing loss:
Family history (age-related hearing loss tends
to run in families)
Repeated exposure to loud noises
Smoking (smokers are more likely to have
such hearing loss than nonsmokers)
Certain medical conditions and medications
also contribute to age-related hearing loss.
About half of all people over age 75 have some
amount of age-related hearing loss.…read more
The loss of hearing occurs slowly over time. It is most
difficult to hear high-frequency sounds, such as
someone talking. As hearing gets worse, it may become
difficult to hear sounds at lower pitches.
Certain sounds seem overly loud
Difficulty hearing things in noisy areas
High-pitched sounds such as "s" or "th" are hard to
distinguish from one another
Men's voices are easier to hear than womens.
Other people's voices sound mumbled or slurred
Ringing in the ears…read more
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical
history, and perform a physical exam of your ear canal and
eardrum with a lighted instrument called an otoscope.
You will probably need to see a specialist, a doctor specially
trained in disorders of the ear, nose, and throat.
You may also see an audiologist who can do a complete
hearing evaluation to determine the extent of hearing loss.
Tests may include the following:
Rinne test--involves a vibrating tuning fork placed on the
bone behind your ear to test for hearing loss
Weber test--a tuning fork is placed on the forehead to
determine one-sided hearing loss
Audiometry --wearing headphones and listening for
different tones, which vary in pitch and loudness…read more