Ear Infections & Hearing Loss

Ear Infections & Hearing Loss

Dr. Molly Dillon Ear Health

Dr. Molly Dillon

Dr. Dillon specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of hearing, balance and related disorders, with an emphasis on audiologic rehabilitation. She has been a guest speaker for many local organizations and frequently presents educational lectures on hearing loss and hearing instrument technologies in Northwest Arkansas. Dr. Dillon has been practicing audiology since 2005 and joined the staff at Blue Wave Hearing Centers in 2008. She, her husband and their two children are proud to be residents of beautiful Bella Vista, Arkansas.
Dr. Molly Dillon

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Hearing loss is a common condition affecting people of all ages worldwide. It is usually caused by several things injury, age, infection, heredity, and noise exposure. These are the factors that usually interrupt with human’s auditory nerve. The most prevalent loss is sensorineural that is usually caused by the above list.

An ear infection is also one of the contributors that leads to losing our ability to hear. Hearing loss caused by ear infection is most commonly considered a conductive hearing loss. Mostly, the infection occurs at the middle ear which usually causes various fluid to build up and thus obstructing eardrum movement and also the bones attached to it.

Understanding Ear Infections

An ear infection is one of the dangerous ears associated problems. It is considered a conductive hearing loss and usually affects the middle and the outer ear – rather than the auditory nerve the way sensorineural hearing loss does.

Ear infections are usually caused by obstruction or disturbance in the middle ear. The middle ear is the one that sends sound to the auditory nerves. Obstruction is the one that prevents sounds from accessing the middle ear and thus causing one to lose his hearing ability. Conductive loss can thus be caused by a hole in the eardrum, fluid buildup in the middle ear, or a buildup of earwax.

Otitis media is the term specialists used when describing the type of infection in the middle ear. This infection is usually serious and mostly causes a buildup of fluid in the middle ear and thus making it too difficult for the ossicular and the eardrum chain to work together to move sounds to the auditory nerves. Ossicular chain is usually made up of three small bones in the body (incus, malleus, and stapes). These bones are very small like grains, and any buildup could cause them to function improperly.

Is hearing loss due to an ear infection permanent?

Hearing issues or hearing loss caused by an ear infection is most often temporary and lasts for a very short period. Antibiotics are the best cures for ear infection. If the treatment is successful, your hearing should return to normal. Some people may experience a recurring ear infection. As treatment, physicians may opt to place a tube that drains the fluids.

There is usually a lot of pain that is usually associated with ear infections. Your eardrum may rupture because of pressure and pain that is being realized in your ear. When one has a recurrent history of ear infection, it is recommended to see a specialist.

If the treatment is not done, chances are high that you will be infected with tympanosclerosis. This usually the scarring or the thickening of the ear tympanic membrane, which in turn affects the movement of the eardrum and hearing problems. If after the treatment you realize that your hearing does not return to normal, it is important to visit a hearing specialist.

Seeking Treatment for Hearing Loss

If you believe you may have a hearing loss, contact us at Blue Wave Hearing Centers. Untreated hearing loss is not something you should wait on for treatment. At Blue Wave Hearing Centers, our team will identify the type and the degree of the untreated hearing loss. We will then recommend the treatment method depending on the configuration of your hearing loss.