Common Causes of Hearing Loss

11 March 2022
 Categories: , Blog


Hearing loss is a symptom that hits many people at some point in their lives. In some cases, the loss is short-term and may resolve itself. In others, you may require a hearing test and ongoing input from an ENT specialist. Here are some of the common causes and the type of treatment you can expect.

A Change in Pressure

A quick change in the pressure in the environment around you results in the pressure inside your ears not matching it. As a result, you're likely to experience some hearing loss. If you travel by plane, it's likely that you'll experience this to some degree. In most cases, yawning or performing the Valsalva manoeuvre will return your hearing to a normal or near-normal state. Should you find that the hearing loss continues for a while after being on the ground, speak with your GP.

Ear Wax Build-Up

Everyone produces ear wax. But when that earwax compacts and builds up inside your ear, it may disrupt the way sound travels through your ear canals. If your hearing is especially muffled, you can try over-the-counter drops from a pharmacist or medical olive oil. If neither of those methods works after a couple of weeks, consult with an ENT specialist. They may be able to suction some of the wax from your ear and help return your hearing to a normal state.

Natural Ageing

Hearing loss is a part of the natural ageing process. There isn't a clear explanation as to why this happens. However, it may be due to a combination of genetics and environmental factors such as noise exposure over the years. Because of this, it's important to have periodic hearing tests as you get older. Consult with your usual GP to find out what the appropriate intervals are for your age and medical background. If your hearing declines, you may benefit from aids that make the sounds around you clearer. 

Vestibular Diseases

Vestibular diseases such as Meniere's disease and labyrinthitis can both cause hearing loss. They can cause swelling in the vestibulocochlear nerve, which is responsible for transmitting sound signals to your brain for processing. Alongside hearing loss, you may experience some ringing in the ears—tinnitus. Your medical team can perform a hearing test to detect how bad the hearing loss is. From there, they can perform certain maneuvers or prescribe drugs that can rectify the vestibular disease that's affecting your hearing.