Audico - Complete Hearing Solution


01. What is a hearing loss?
02. What causes a hearing loss?
03. Can I prevent a hearing loss?
04. What are symptoms of hearing loss?
05. How does noise affect hearing?
06. What is age-related hearing loss?
07. Can ear-infections cause hearing loss?
08. Can ear injuries cause hearing loss?
09. Can certain medications cause hearing loss?
10. How does the ear work?
11. Who can diagnose a hearing loss?
12. How is hearing loss diagnosed?
13. How is hearing loss treated?
14. What is a cochlear implant?
15. What are hearing protectors?
16. What are hearing aids?
17. Should I get a hearing aid?
18. What can I do for a hearing loss?
19. How can I slow down hearing loss?
20. How common is hearing loss?
21. What types of hearing loss are most common in adults?
22. What impact can hearing loss have on older person's life?
23. Is hearing loss hereditary?
24. What other factors play a role in hearing loss?
25. If earwax is causing me to have a hearing problem what can I do?
26. If I already have a hearing loss, can I get my hearing back?
27. How do I know if I have a hearing loss?
28. What do I do if I think I have a hearing loss?

01. What is a hearing loss?
A hearing loss is a reduction in the level of sounds that you can hear. A hearing loss can be mild, moderate, severe or profound. It can affect all frequencies/pitches or specific frequencies/pitches.

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02. What causes a hearing loss?
There are many causes of hearing loss; aging, infection, head injury, exposure to noise, genetic factors and certain medication. The sound we hear is transferred from the environment around us into our ears where it causes vibrations in the outer and middle portions of the ear until it reaches the inner ear where it moves tiny hair cells and registers as sound in the hearing nerve. A problem with any one of these processes can cause a hearing loss.

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03. Can I prevent a hearing loss?
A hearing loss due to old age is not preventable. It is possible, however, to prevent a noise induced hearing loss by always wearing ear protectors/plugs when you are exposed to loud noise. It is important to note that you can damage your hearing by having your MP3 player turned up too loud.

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04. What are symptoms of hearing loss?
Most people with a hearing loss will have some or all of the following symptoms; asking people to repeat themselves, responding to questions inappropriately, turning the TV or radio up very loud, finding loud sounds uncomfortable and quiet sounds unclear, becoming confused in noisy situations and struggling to follow conversations in group situations.

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05. How does noise affect hearing?
Exposure to loud noises can cause a temporary hearing loss and prolonged exposure to loud noises can cause a permanent hearing loss. The hair cells in the ear become over-worked and die. It is important to always wear ear protection if you are in a noisy environment for any length of time.

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06. What is age-related hearing loss?
As you get older the hair cells in your inner ear become less effective and, as a result, the hearing decreases. It is the high frequencies that are affected most leading to problems with speech discrimination. The onset and development of this process is different for every patient.

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07. Can ear-infections cause hearing loss?
An ear infection can dull your hearing however, your hearing should return to normal once the infection has cleared up. Occasionally chronic infections can cause a permanent hearing loss.

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08. Can ear injuries cause hearing loss?
Most ear injuries do not cause hearing loss as the ear is well protected in the skull. However, severe head trauma can damage the inner ear and result in a profound and permanent deafness.

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09. Can certain medications cause hearing loss?
Some chemotherapy drugs and some antibiotics (aminoglycosides), used for very severe infections, can cause hearing loss. However, these drugs are usually given in a hospital environment where the level of the drug and the hearing level can be closely monitored.

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10. How does the ear work?
In a normal hearing ear the sound enters the opening of your outer ear and hits the ear drum causing it to vibrate. These vibrations cause the bones of the middle ear to move and transfer the sound to the inner ear (cochlea). The cochlea is a shell shaped structure in the inner ear which houses the hair cells. These hair cells are stimulated, by the middle ear vibrations, and cause electrical impulses in the hearing nerve which travel to the brain and are registered as sound.

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11. Who can diagnose a hearing loss?
An Audiologist is a professional qualified in the field of hearing and hearing loss, they have passed both written and practical exams. They can carry out hearing assessments on adults and children to diagnose a hearing loss.

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12. How is hearing loss diagnosed?
The main test for identifying a hearing loss is pure-tone audiometry. It assesses the lowest sounds that you can hear over a range of different frequencies/pitches. The test involves you sitting in a soundproof booth; you listen to different pitched tones through headphones. You have to indicate every time you hear a tone by pressing a button. The test takes approximately 20-30 minutes.

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13. How is hearing loss treated?
The management of hearing loss depends on the cause. In many cases a hearing loss caused by infection can be treated by antibiotics and occasionally surgery. Age related hearing loss cannot be cured but the hearing impairment can be managed with a hearing aid.

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14. What is a cochlear implant?
A cochlear implant is device used to treat children or adults who have profound deafness in both ears. It is an implanted device which directly stimulates the inner ear and hearing nerve. Cochlear implants can improve hearing in people whose hearing loss is so severe they cannot be helped with even the most powerful hearing aids.

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15. What are hearing protectors?
Ear protectors are designed to reduce the effects of loud noise by reducing the level of noise that can enter your ears. They are available in 2 different models; small ear plugs that fit inside your ears and ear muffs that sit over your ears.

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16. What are hearing aids?
A hearing aid is an electronic device which amplifies sounds entering your ear. Digital hearing aids are programmed exactly to your hearing loss giving a superior sound quality and improved understanding of speech in the presence of background noise.

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17. Should I get a hearing aid?
If you feel that you are missing out on conversations between family and friends or if you cannot hear your TV or radio then you might benefit from wearing a hearing aid. A hearing aid may help you to hear better and allow you to lead a more active/social life again.

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18. What can I do for a hearing loss?
The first step to take if you feel you have a hearing loss is to visit your family doctor or an audiologist to determine the type, cause and severity of the hearing loss. Your family doctor might refer you on to an ear surgeon if he/she feels there is a possibility of improving your hearing. If you suddenly lose your hearing you should see a doctor urgently.

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19. How can I slow down hearing loss?
Avoidance of excessive noise and the wearing of ear protectors when in a noisy work environment can help to prevent a noise induced hearing loss. For age related hearing loss, there is not a lot that can be done to slow down the deafness, but fortunately in most cases the hearing loss progresses very slowly.

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20. How common is hearing loss?
Hearing loss is more common in the older population however a person of any age can develop a hearing loss. It is estimated that 1 in 7 of teh general population have a significant hearing loss. Recent figures suggest that 42% of over 50ís have a significant hearing loss, this increases to 68% for the over 80ís. A small number of babies are born with a hearing loss.

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21. What types of hearing loss are most common in adults?
The most common type of hearing loss in adults is a high frequency hearing loss associated with the aging process where high pitch sounds cannot be heard at a normal volume. This type of hearing loss causes a reduction in the clarity of speech leading to an inability to decipher exactly what is being said even though the volume of the speech is normal.

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22. What impact can hearing loss have on older personís life?
Older people, who suffer from a hearing loss, struggle to hear conversation especially in a crowd or a noisy situation. This can lead them to become withdrawn and isolated as they feel they can no longer take part in social activities due to their hearing impairment. This in turn can lead to anxiety and depression.

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23. Is hearing loss hereditary?
In most cases hearing loss in not inherited from ones parents but acquired as a result of infections or just part of the ageing process. However, in children born with profound deafness and in some cases of deafness occurring in middle age such as otosclerosis, genetics also plays a role. In some families age related hearing loss seems to occur early, this suggests a possible genetic role.

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24. What other factors play a role in hearing loss?
Causes of hearing loss can be divided into congenital (present at birth) and acquired (develop after birth). Causes of congenital hearing loss may include events that occur before or during birth. Problems such as lack of oxygen, infections and metabolic problems may cause severe damage to the inner ear. Acquired causes of hearing loss include severe infections during childhood such as meningitis and persistent, long lasting ear infections. Some drugs, such as anti cancer drugs and those used to treat severe infection can cause a hearing loss. On rare occasions tumours of the brain or the nerve of hearing can also cause deafness.

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25. If earwax is causing me to have a hearing problem what can I do?
The hearing loss caused by wax is temporary; once you get the wax removed your hearing should return to normal. If you think you have a build up of wax you should make an appointment to see your GP.

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26. If I already have a hearing loss, can I get my hearing back?
The permanency of your hearing loss depends on the cause. Some hearing losses are temporary however most hearing losses, like age related hearing losses are permanent. You can regain useful hearing by wearing a properly fitted, good quality hearing aid(s).

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27. How do I know if I have a hearing loss?
You may have a hearing loss if you find yourself doing any of the following regularly asking people to repeat themselves, responding to questions inappropriately, turning the TV or radio up very loud, finding loud sounds uncomfortable and quiet sounds unclear, becoming confused in noisy situations and struggling to follow conversations in group situations.

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28. What do I do if I think I have a hearing loss?
If you think you have a hearing loss you should contact your GP and ask him to refer you to an audiologist for a hearing assessment, or you can make an appointment with an audiologist directly.

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We specialise in:

Ear Examination and Investigation

Adult and Children Hearing Assessments

Tinnitus Assessment and Therapy

Newborn Hearing Screening

State of the Art Digital Hearing Aids