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your hearing

Hearing is one of our primary senses that allow us to effectively communicate in the variety of listening situations we encounter each and every day. Healthy and properly functioning ears enable us to do the following

Audiology & Hearing Center

hearing explained

Hearing is one of our primary senses that allow us to effectively communicate in the variety of listening situations we encounter each and every day.

Healthy and properly functioning ears enable us to perceive sounds from a large range of frequencies, allowing us to hear in easy or very difficult listening situations.

The ear enables us to properly develop speech and language, communicate with loved ones and connect to the world in a variety of settings.

The human ear is an astounding part of our anatomy that receives speech and sounds and transduces these sounds through the outer, middle and inner ear where it is transmitted by the brain.

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causes of hearing loss

There are a number of different causes of hearing loss which can disrupt the successful transmission of sound.

Outer Ear: The outer ear consists of a pinna which varies from size and shape from individual to individual. The differing sizes or abnormally small size or absent pinna altogether can cause hearing loss. Infection or growths present in the outer ear can also have the potential to cause hearing loss. The pinna leads to the ear canal where wax (cerumen) is produced. If an individual has a small ear canal or produces an excessive amount of wax the ear canal can become blocked causing a hearing loss. If a foreign body is present in the ear canal this can also cause a hearing loss. The ear canal leads to the ear drum (Tympanic Membrane). Numerous abnormalities of the ear drum can create a possible hearing loss. Examples are holes (perforations) of the ear drum, thickening and scarring of the eardrum as well as a retracted eardrum all have the potential to cause hearing loss.

Middle Ear: One of the most common disorders of the middle ear cavity is a hearing loss caused by a build-up of fluid and/or infected fluid in the middle ear cavity which is called otitis media. This is most common in infants and toddlers due to the anatomy of the Eustachian tube but can be present in adults. There are varying degrees of otitis media which all have the potential to cause a hearing loss.

Following the eardrum are the middle ear bones (ossicles). These are the smallest bones in the human body and are located in the middle ear cavity. These bones are called the Malleus, Incus and Stapes and are often referred to as the mallet, anvil and stirrup. These bones are connected and help with the transmission of sound to the inner ear. Potential abnormalities of the ossicles are otosclerosis (hardening of the bones) and a condition where the bones become disconnected from possible head trauma. Within the middle ear space is the Eustachian tube which essentially equalizes the pressure on both sides of the eardrum. If the Eustachian tube is not function properly it can possibly cause a degree of hearing loss from the Eustachian tube itself or the fact that a dysfunction Eustachian tube can create a build-up of fluid within the middle ear cavity causing a hearing loss.

Inner Ear: The inner ear is an extremely complicated portion of the ear. A major hearing organ called the cochlea is located in the inner ear and houses important structures that enable the appropriate transmission of sound to the brain. Not only can hearing loss occur here but balance issues can also arise from abnormalities of the inner ear. Disorders of the inner ear make up the largest number of hearing loss among individuals. Most of the hearing loss present in the inner ear is caused by abnormal hair cell function within the inner ear. Two main causes of abnormal hair cell function are exposure to excessive levels of noise and aging which is known as presbycusis. Infants born with hearing loss (congenital hearing loss) are typically caused by abnormal cochlear function. Other, less common conditions can exist within the inner ear that can cause a hearing loss.


types of hearing loss

There are a number of different causes of hearing loss which can disrupt the successful transmission of sound.

ringing in ears - tinnitus

There are a number of different causes of hearing loss which can disrupt the successful transmission of sound.

According to the American Tinnitus Association, approximately 50 million people in the United States have tinnitus to some degree. Tinnitus is a perceived sound such as ringing, buzzing, chirping, etc. that a person hears in one or both ears. Tinnitus is a symptom and is most often present when hearing loss is present. There are other potential causes of tinnitus such as blood pressure, head trauma, certain diseases, tumors and wax build-up. Tinnitus often-times is not treatable but can be managed effectively with hearing aids and or tinnitus maskers. In addition, sound therapy may also be utilized to lessen an individual's perceived tinnitus.


impact of hearing loss

There are a number of different causes of hearing loss which can disrupt the successful transmission of sound.

Hearing loss can have a large impact on an individual's life. Children with hearing loss can have speech and language delays, reduced social maturation and learning delays. With adults, hearing loss that is left untreated can erode relationships with loved ones, increase stress and fatigue levels and make an individual reduce activity levels due to the hearing loss that is present. This can result in an increase in poor health with recent studies suggesting a possible increase in depression and even dementia. With appropriate treatment, the impact of hearing loss is lessened and the gain that can be achieved with appropriate treatment can be astounding in many areas of an individual's life.

practice standards

We are your healthcare professional specializing in identifying, diagnosing, treating and monitoring disorders of the auditory and vestibular system of the ear.
1

Valuing our Patients

From the first point of contact we will ensure that you receive the best care and attention from every individual at Audiology & Hearing Center of Grand Island.

2

Personalized Care

Every patient has entrusted their hearing healthcare to us. We will continue to strive to earn your confidence in any way we can and for years to come.

3

Products and Services You Need

We take pride in offering a variety of hearing instrument products and ensuring that we will recommend the appropriate product for each individual.