My ENT Blog
Posts for category: Hearing Loss
A hearing aid could help you become part of the conversation again.
Do you have trouble understanding what people are saying on the television? Do you find yourself asking people to repeat themselves over and over again? Does it suddenly seem like those around you are always mumbling or it’s become increasingly difficult to hear people, especially in loud settings? If you said yes, then our Pembroke Pines and Hollywood, FL, otolaryngologists Dr. David Jassir, Dr. Mark Sukenik and Dr. Sabine Hesse are here to tell you how a hearing aid could significantly improve these day-to-day issues.
Most of the questions we asked above address the telltale signs of hearing loss. Of course, hearing loss is usually gradual, so it isn’t always easy to pinpoint when you have a problem; however, trouble hearing people (no matter whether they are in person or on the TV or radio) is one of the first signs that your hearing has diminished.
You may also find that when you are out to dinner or in a crowd that you often have no idea what people are saying. As a result, you may space out or disengage from the conversation entirely, making social gatherings and events more frustrating than fun. Again, if this is starting to sound all-too-familiar then it’s probably time that you scheduled a hearing evaluation with one of our ENT doctors.
What should I expect when wearing a hearing aid?
While glasses or contact lenses are designed to correct poor vision, it’s important to understand that a hearing aid isn’t designed to restore your hearing. Instead, what it does do is amplify the sounds around you, making it easier for you to hear and understand what is being said. Since there are certain tones and pitches that are more difficult to hear when you have hearing loss, these pitches are amplified whenever you wear a hearing aid.
Unfortunately, a lot of people wait too long to get a hearing aid, which is why it’s so important to see a doctor if you suspect that you may have some degree of hearing loss. It’s important to understand that it will take time to adjust to your new device and that the more often you wear it the better. Since hearing loss is something that can impact your physical, mental and even emotional health, it’s important that you have an ENT specialist who listens to your needs and can be there for you to guide you through the process of getting a hearing aid.
If you are noticing changes in your hearing and you’re finding it difficult to understand those around you then it’s time to call the hearing specialists at South Florida ENT Associates in Pembroke Pines and Hollywood, FL, to schedule an evaluation.
Whether attributed to aging, disease or trauma, hearing loss affects many people of all ages. While hearing loss is common, the impact on quality of life can be huge. Hearing aids, which improve hearing and speech comprehension, can greatly help sufferers of hearing loss live a better life. An ear, nose and throat doctor can work with patients to determine the best hearing aid for them.
What kind of hearing aids are available?
Depending on the severity of the condition, different hearing aids are used. Some aids, called ITE, or in-the-ear, are fitted completely inside the outer ear. BTE, or behind-the-ear aids, are encased in plastic that sits behind the ear. The BTE aid is the most diverse type of hearing aid, and is used commonly in hearing loss suffers, no matter the age or severity of hearing loss. Canal hearing aids are less visible than ITE or BTE varieties, and fit completely into the ear canal. ITC, or in-the-canal, aids fit into the ear canal, while CIC, or completely-in-canal, aids are smaller and nearly invisible in the ear canal.
How do hearing aids work?
Hearing aids are powered by small, replaceable batteries. A microphone picks up the sounds around the wearer. An amplifier in the aid itself intensifies those sounds so that they are louder as it enters the ear. A receiver sends these louder sounds into the ear, where they are then sent to the brain via neural signals.
How do I know if a hearing aid is right for me?
After an appointment with an ear, nose and throat doctor, the cause and severity of hearing loss is determined. If the hearing loss is considered severe enough, hearing aids are required. In some cases, if hearing loss occurs in both of the ears, two hearing aids are needed. The aid is custom fitted and adjusted to the ear. About one in five people who suffer from hearing loss benefits from hearing aids. Hearing aids have a greater effect on people who suffer from hearing loss due to damage in the inner ear than hearing loss from damage to the outer ear, such as the ear canal or eardrum.
If you suffer from hearing loss, South Florida ENT Associates in Hollywood, FL can help. They are experts in their field, dedicated to compassionate, knowledgable care for all of their patients. After an appointment with an ear, nose and throat doctor, the cause and severity of hearing loss is determined. An appointment will be made with an Audiologist. Call to schedule an appointment for a consultation today!
Hearing loss can be both frightening and frustrating. However, did you know that it may be caused by something as simple as too much ear wax?
Both children and adults are prone to build-up of the wax or cerumen that occupies the ear canal. This narrow tube-like structure, comprised of bone and skin, leads to the ear drum. Keeping the canal free of dirt and germs, ear wax is important to healthy ears and hearing, but for people who are prone to too much of a good thing, excessive cerumen can cause:
- very muffled hearing
- ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
- an uncomfortable full feeling in the ear or even pain
What causes earwax build-up?
Anything designed to help people's ears can actually cause accumulation of cerumen. Hearing aids and ear plugs, such as those used for swimming, block the natural exit of the ear canal where ear wax normally just falls out. In addition, use of cotton-tipped swabs to remove wax can push it toward the eardrum, resulting in impaction (a hardened blockage) and even perforation of the ear drum, a part of the body which is critical to good hearing.
What can be done about ear wax build-up?
People who have this problem repeatedly may treat the accumulation with over the counter ear drops:
- Lying on one side, the individual pulls the ear up and back and instills the drops.
- He or she waits for several minutes, allowing the drops to soften the wax.
- The individual flushes out the medication and wax with warm water.
For individuals who have stubborn and hardened ear wax, a trip to an experienced otolaryngologist, or ear, nose, throat doctor is in order. An ENT physician can visualize the ear canal with a lighted instrument called an otoscope. The doctor gently removes the impacted ear wax with a small spoon-like instrument called a curette, using suction, if necessary, and flushing with water.
The American Academy of Otolaryngology recommends that individuals who have recurring issues with ear wax visit an ENT doctor every 6 to 12 months for a check-up and cleaning of the ear canal as necessary. This routine will help avoid the hearing loss and other discomforts associated with ear wax build-up. In addition, anyone who is experiencing serious pain or dizziness associated with a drop in hearing should see a physician right away.
Dr. David Jassir in Hollywood, Florida
At South Florida ENT Associates, Dr. David Jassir skillfully treats a wide range of conditions affecting the ear, nose and throat, including allergies, sinus conditions, sleep apnea and swallowing problems. Call his office today for an appointment to discuss how to treat your ear wax: 954-966-7000.