As we age, with each passing year brings unique experiences and changes. One change that often accompanies the passage of time is the gradual decline in our sensory abilities, especially the ability to hear. In this blog, we’ll dive into the relationship between aging and hearing loss, exploring the causes, consequences, and next steps we can assist with here at St. John’s Hearing Institute.
The Connection Between Aging and Hearing Loss:
If you’ve ever asked yourself, “why do we lose our hearing?”, you’ve come to the right place! There are a plethora of reasons for hearing loss, but aging is among the primary ones.
Aging is a natural process that affects every aspect of our being, and the auditory system is no exception. Over the years, the delicate structures within our ears that facilitate hearing undergo wear and tear, leading to a decline in our ability to perceive sounds. This process, known as presbycusis, is the most common cause of age-related hearing loss. It typically starts around the age of 60 and progresses gradually. As you age and acquire potential hearing loss, St. John’s Hearing Institute is here to help you through the process.
Several factors contributing to age-related hearing loss include:
- Genetics: If hearing loss runs in your family, you might be more likely to experience it. Often, the answer to “why do we lose our hearing”, can be simply because of one’s genetic makeup. However, do not fear! St. John’s Hearing Institute is here to help assist you in all stages of your hearing journey.
- Exposure to Noise: Years of exposure to loud noises, whether from occupational hazards, recreational activities, or everyday urban environments, can accelerate hearing loss. Noise-induced hearing loss often interacts synergistically with age-related changes.
- Blood Flow and Cardiovascular Health: A healthy cardiovascular system is crucial for maintaining optimal hearing. Reduced blood flow to the inner ear due to cardiovascular issues can contribute to hearing loss.
- Medications and Health Conditions: Certain medications and health conditions, including diabetes, can impact our hearing health. Schedule an in-person appointment or E-Clinic consultation, and St. John’s Hearing Institute can help identify these health conditions in your family history.
While the symphony of aging and hearing loss plays on, St. John’s Hearing Institute wants to support you every step of the way. Here are proactive steps you can take to ensure we remain attuned to the world around us:
- Regular Hearing Check-ups: Regular hearing assessments can help detect and address hearing loss early. Schedule a check-up with one of St. John’s Hearing Institute’s state-of-the-art practitioners, either in-person at one of our Florida locations, or via our E-Clinic.
- Healthy Lifestyle Choices: Maintaining cardiovascular health through exercise, a balanced diet, and managing chronic conditions can positively impact hearing health.
- Noise Management: Minimize exposure to loud noises and consider using ear protection when engaging in noisy activities.
- Hearing Aids and Assistive Devices: Modern hearing aids are sophisticated devices that can amplify sound and enhance speech comprehension. Consult with a St. John’s hearing concierge to explore suitable options.
- Communication Strategies: Learning effective communication strategies and advocating for your hearing needs can significantly improve your interactions and relationships.
The relationship between aging and hearing loss can be a complex one. Time, genetics, environment, and personal choices can all have an effect on one’s hearing ability. By staying attuned to your hearing health, seeking timely intervention, and embracing the support of your local otolaryngologist, you can enhance your overall well-being while navigating the beautiful journey of aging. Stop asking the question, “why do we lose our hearing”, and book an appointment with St. John’s Hearing Institute today!