4 Causes of Hearing Loss

Hearing loss is common in America, with around 48 million Americans reporting a certain extent of hearing loss. It significantly impacts a victim’s quality of life, entailing their mental, physical, and cognitive health. Hearing loss issues are more common in aging adults.

However, it can affect anybody. Learning the various hearing loss types and their causes can help you find ways to protect yours and your loved ones’ hearing health better.

Here are four causes of hearing loss.

1.    Loud noise

Loud noise can damage nerves, membranes, hair cells, and other ear parts. This may result in temporary hearing loss. Permanent hearing loss may occur if the ear’s vital parts are destroyed beyond repair. Damage to any ear part may cause hearing loss. Loud noise is hazardous to the cochlea (inner ear). Extreme loud noise exposure can impact your hearing ability by damaging the membranes and cells in the cochlea.

Listening to loud noises for an extended period may overwork your ear hair cells, causing their death. The hearing loss advances provided the exposure continues, and the effects may worsen even when you’re no longer exposed to noise. Avoid listening to loud sounds and use hearing protection when in jobs with a high chance of hearing loss. This will help safeguard your ear’s health.

2.    Aging

Age-related hearing loss or presbycusis happens gradually as people age. Since it’s gradual, you might not notice when you start losing your hearing ability. Different issues impact hearing as people get older. While people can cope with age-related hearing loss, it can significantly affect the quality of life if not treated. Different inner ear changes, including changes in inner ear structures, and hearing nerves impairment may cause hearing loss.

Changes in how the brain processes sound and speech, changes in how blood flows to the ear, and damage to the tiny ear hairs that transmit sound to your brain also affect your hearing ability. While age-related hearing loss may not be prevented, avoiding repetitive loud noise exposure, controlling blood sugar for those with diabetes, and wearing ear protection in areas with loud sounds can help keep it from worsening.

3.    Earwax buildup

While ear wax is crucial for sound ear health, including cleaning the ears and protecting them from dirt, infection, and dust, its buildup can lead to hearing loss, ear pain, ringing in the ears, and dizziness if not treated. While some people naturally produce more earwax that may block their ears, others experience buildup because they:

  • Naturally produce dry or hard earwax
  • Have hairy or narrow ear canals
  • Have bony growths on the ear canal’s outer part
  • Are aged (earwax gets drier with age)

Inserting objects into the ear canal, such as ear plugs, hearing aids, or cotton buds. If you’re naturally susceptible to naturally producing excess earwax, regular earwax removal treatments can help.

4.    Ear infections

Ear infections can affect any ear part, including the inner, middle, and external. Middle and outer ear infections often result in temporary conductive hearing loss till they resolve. Nevertheless, inner ear infections can cause permanent sensorineural hearing loss. An ear infection, like a swimmer’s ear, can be prevented by keeping the ear dry, drying ears after bathing or showering, not trying to remove earwax, and not putting objects in your ear canal.


Hearing loss negatively impacts a victim’s quality of life. Familiarizing yourself with hearing loss causes and preventing them can help protect your hearing.

17 thoughts on “4 Causes of Hearing Loss

  • Now you have scared me. I will visit ENT to get my ears checked

  • It’s so important to protect our ears so we don’t lose hearing. I wear noise-reducing ear plugs at concerts for that reason!

  • My husband has hearing loss thanks to his military job! He hates it.

  • Wow, this is really interesting to know. This is probably why I don’t really like things to be to loud too.

  • My older sisters have hearing problems. I wonder which one was the cause.

  • I’ve been trying to take care of my body more, and my hearing is a big part of that too. I’ve been trying to keep my headphones to a certain level.

  • This is a really great and very informative post, it’s actually nice to know more about this

  • My mother had some hearing problems. This is really informative thanks for sharing this with us

  • We should concentrate more to prevent hearing loss. Thanks for reminding us!

  • My husband was complaining that he couldn’t hear well out of his left ear. He went to the Dr and she removed SO much wax. It made a huge difference!

  • I know for sure my father In Law has issues with his hearing because every time we visit he has hi TV up so loud. I told them to look into hearing aids… it will help and those devices have come a long way. I had my hearing tested a few months ago and it was excellent thank goodness.

  • I am sure my husband has hearing loss. His was caused by loud noises years back and probably through work too. My children have selective hearing lol. Kids!!!!

  • Thank you for outlining the four main causes of hearing loss in your article. It’s informative and provides valuable insights into the different factors that can contribute to hearing impairment. Keep up the good work!

  • Thank you for sharing the leading cause of hearing loss. It is so important to take care of your health along with your hearing as well.

  • I lost so much of my hearing in one ear once due to wax build up. It was such a relief to treat it and get it cleared up.

  • When I was a kid, I went swimming with some relatives, I do know how to swim but I somehow landed falsely and water got into my ear, I couldn’t hear until that evening – thankfully the water just got out….it was not easy not being able to hear. We should really be careful and take care of our ears…

  • My daughter was born deaf and wears a cochlear implant. I’m thankful for modern technology to help her have a chance to hear.


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