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Types of hearing loss

Hearing loss effects millions of people worldwide and for all different reasons. It can effect us simply as part of the ageing process like exposure to loud sounds over sustained period. Hearing loss can be very difficult for many people and effect greatly there lives and particularly their social interaction. At Egan’s Hearing Centre we are dedicated to making those lives of those suffering hearing loss the very best they can be.

As a result of technological breakthroughs hearing aids are more discreet than ever before. Modern hearing aids are small, stylish and available in a vast range from invisible in-the-ear instruments to discreet behind-the-ear instruments, suitable to different types of hearing loss and every personality. Our qualified hearing aid audiologists will help you choose the best hearing aid for you.


Conductive hearing loss is caused by problems in the outer and middle ear, preventing sounds getting through to the inner ear. The most common causes are perforated ear drum, build-up of ear wax in the inner ear, fluid in the middle ear, or damaged or defective middle ear bones (ossicles). Conductive hearing loss can be treated.


Senorineural hearing loss occurs when the delicate sensory cells or nerves fibres in the inner ear get damaged and stop transmitting sound correctly. The most common cause of this type of hearing loss is the natural process of ageing or excessive exposure to noise. In most case this condition is permanent but can be helped through using hearing aids.


Mixed hearing loss is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss. This means there is damage in both the outer/middle ear, as well as the inner ear. Depending on severity, you may benefit from using hearing aids.

Hearing Loss and Cognitive Impairment

Recent studies suggest that adults with hearing loss are significantly more likely than adults with normal hearing to develop dementia (Griffin, 2019).

In a 2013 study, Lin and his colleagues tracked the overall cognitive abilities (including concentration, memory and planning skills) of nearly 2,000 older adults whose average age was 77. After six years, those who began the study with hearing loss severe enough to interfere with conversation were 24% more likely than those with normal hearing to see their cognitive abilities diminish. Essentially, the researchers said, hearing loss seemed to speed up age-related cognitive decline.

Fortunately, there’s a potential upside. If this connection — shown in several recent and well-regarded studies — holds up, it raises the possibility that treating hearing loss more aggressively could help stave off cognitive decline and dementia by using the main method of intervention for hearing loss; hearing aids. The link between hearing loss and milder cognitive problems is becoming increasingly accepted. “Every doctor knows that hearing loss can result in cognitive problems, but they still don’t focus on it as a priority when they evaluate someone with suspected dementia — which is a big missed opportunity,” Doraiswamy says. “The benefits of correcting hearing loss on cognition are twice as large as the benefits from any cognitive-enhancing drugs now on the market. It should be the first thing we focus on.”

So if you are concerned about your hearing, come and have a free hearing test and consultation with one of our fully qualified hearing aid Audiologists. Just click here make your appointment at our clinic on Lavitts Quay, Cork or at one of our many Hearing Clinics throughout Munster.


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