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Can an Ear Infection Cause Adult Hearing Loss?
You may have to deal with ear infections throughout your adult life. While they can be uncomfortable, you may also notice that your hearing begins to deteriorate and isn’t as good overall. You should know that this can happen with ear infections, and that there’s likely no reason to assume you have permanent hearing loss.
The question that may arise as you manage your ear infection is can an ear infection can cause adult hearing loss. It’s a good question to ask and one that requires a bit more insights to answer. When you have an ear infection, you may experience some muffled and distorted sounds. However, in most circumstances, any hearing loss you experience with an ear infection will only be temporary.
What is an Ear Infection and What are the Symptoms?
An ear infection is essentially an infection of the middle ear. The air-filled space behind the eardrum that contains the tiny vibrating bones of the ear is disrupted. You may assume that only children get ear infections, but you should know that it is still possible to get them well into adulthood.
The onset of an ear infection is usually quick and you’ll likely notice the symptoms right away. When you get an ear infection it’s important that you closely monitor the situation. You may be dealing with some pain but keep in mind that most ear infections will soon clear up on their own. If you get an ear infection as an adult then you might have drainage of fluid from the ear, trouble hearing and ear pain and discomfort.
Can an Ear Infection Cause Adult Hearing Loss?
A common cause of ear infections is earaches. Both fluid and congestion can be culprits of experiencing temporary hearing loss with an ear infection as an adult. If you often get multiple ear infections, then know these circumstances can cause even more serious complications and problems.
For example, you may feel as though you’re underwater as you take in the sounds and voices of people talking. Any temporary hearing loss you experience usually goes away as soon as you treat the ear infection. You have the chance of experiencing more permanent or long-lasting hearing loss if your ear infection goes untreated for too long and isn’t properly addressed.
The Difference between Temporary Hearing Loss and Permanent Hearing Loss
After visiting your audiologist and finding out that you have hearing loss then you’ll probably instantly be wondering if it’s temporary or permanent. It becomes an applicable and vital question as it relates to managing your hearing loss. Congenital disabilities, loud noises, aging and ototoxicity can all be the cause of permanent hearing loss.
With temporary hearing loss, it will only be present for a short period and will then go away. Start by addressing what’s causing the hearing loss and then any hearing loss being experienced should soon clear up.
If you fail to address what’s causing the temporary hearing loss then there’s a greater chance that the hearing loss can become permanent. Common causes for temporary hearing loss are wax buildup, eardrum perforation, foreign body in the ear canal or an ear infection. However, with the latter, remember that while ear infections can cause hearing loss, it will likely improve once the infection is no longer present.
Treating an Ear Infection
The upside is that hearing loss can be treated and managed in many cases. Most ear infections clear up on their own within three days. You might also want to try applying home remedies to help clear up your ear infection such as using compresses, pain relievers, distractions or changing your sleeping position.
Maintaining Healthy Ears and Hearing
It’s important and in your best interest to schedule an annual hearing test with an audiologist who can check your ears and hearing and identify any hearing loss. Making an appointment is also a way to ensure that you keep your ears healthy. During your visit, you should address questions or concerns you have related to your hearing. Focus on what you can do and what’s in your control when it comes to preventing temporary and permanent hearing damage.
There are times when an ear infection can cause hearing loss. However, any hearing loss that’s experienced is usually going to be temporary. Once the infection clears up, you’re likely to get your hearing back fully.
If you believe there are other issues or causes for your hearing loss, then get in touch with an audiologist right away. An ear infection is one possible cause of hearing loss. However, hearing loss can also transpire from genetics, aging and continuous exposure to loud noises.
Our audiologist will work with you to arrive at a tailored solution that meets your individual hearing needs. Learn more about Brentwood Hearing Center by calling us today at 615-377-0420.