What Causes Hearing Impairments?

What Factors Lead to Hearing Impairments?


Hearing impairment can have a significant impact on your daily life. Not being able to hear clearly or at all can lead to difficulty getting things done, problems socializing and often feelings of isolation and inadequacy. But what causes a hearing impairment? What are the most common reasons people suffer from hearing loss, outside of being born with impaired hearing?

In this blog, SoundLife Hearing Technologies will go over some of the common causes of hearing impairments, both genetic and acquired, and their respective treatment options.

Conductive Hearing Loss

Conductive hearing impairments are caused by physical problems with one or both of your ears. This includes things like ear canal, eardrum, middle ear, or the small bones of the inner ear being damaged or impeded in some way.

Examples of conductive loss include impacted ear wax, inner-ear infections, foreign objects stuck in the ear canal, blockages caused by infections or allergies, and other physical factors. Many types of conductive problems can be fixed with minor procedures or surgeries, but in some cases where it’s more permanent, a bone-conduction hearing aid will help.

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

The causes of sensorineural hearing problems can be more complex and harder to treat. These are problems caused by sensory issues, which can be acquired or inherited. For example, a head injury that damages your ability to hear is acquired, while hearing loss at a particular age running in the family is inherited.

Examples are a malformation of the inner ear, autoimmune inner-ear diseases, long-term exposure to loud noise and more. Although you might think hearing aids are the only solution for sensory issues, there are actually a few treatment options available, depending on the cause.

In some cases, loss from exposure to loud noises will respond to specific medical therapy, or can be treated if it’s a secondary symptom of a different condition.

A Mixture of Causes

As with any medical issue, hearing impairments are often the result of a combination of genetic and environmental factors. For example, someone who has inherited slightly diminished hearing is more likely to listen to things at louder volumes, which will accelerate the loss of their hearing overall.

This is an example of conductive and sensorineural problems causing significant hearing loss. The important thing to remember is that there is a treatment out there for your problem, whatever the cause.

Contact Us for Help with Hearing Impairments

If any of this feels familiar to you, we can help. At SoundLife Hearing Technologies, our professional and friendly team is here to help you every step of the way, from your first audiologist visit to finding the right hearing aids for you. Contact our hearing specialists today and start living the life you want.