There are many causes of hearing loss. In general there are two main groups, "conductive" hearing loss and "sensory" ( or "sensorineural") hearing loss.
In conductive loss, sound doesn't pass properly through the outer or middle ear but the cochlea (organ of hearing) is working normally. Examples include blockage by wax, perforation of the eardrum, fluid in the middle ear (glue ear) or problems with the three hearing bones. Some types of conductive losses can be improved by surgical treatment.
In sensory loss the problem usually lies in the cochlea, the spiral-shaped inner ear organ that converts sound waves into nerves impulses that are sent to our brains. Ageing, noise-damage and genetic hearing losses are examples of causes of sensory loss.
Audiometric tests, starting with a hearing test (also called an audiogram) are necessary to assess the type and severity of any hearing loss. In some cases a hearing aid will be helpful. Many high street opticians and hearing aid providers offer free hearing tests. If your main symptom relates to hearing or tinnitus, it often helps to get your hearing tested first. Always ask for a copy of your hearing test results for your own record and future reference.
If you would like to arrange an appointment to discuss your symptoms further, please do so via using one of the available options on our contact us page