When you are fitted with hearing aids, you become hopeful for better hearing. While the normal aging process and certain medical conditions can cause your hearing acuity to diminish, there is no reason why people cannot enjoy excellent hearing at any age, especially since high-tech, small hearing aids are so readily available.
There are, however, a number of things, that despite hearing aid use, can cause diminished or muffled hearing. Here are three things that may cause your hearing aids to work less effectively and what you can do about them.
1. Chronic Antihistamine Use
If you have allergies, your physician may have recommended that you take over-the-counter antihistamines to manage your symptoms. While these medications are effective in relieving sneezing, watery eyes, and a runny nose, they can lead to a dry mouth, dryness of your skin, and may even dry out the delicate tissues inside of your ears.
When the skin of your outer and middle ears become dry and irritated, inflammation and skin breakdown can develop. In rare cases, this can lead to scar formation, and if this happens, your hearing aids may fail to work properly. If you take antihistamines to treat your allergies, see your audiologist for evaluation and further treatment, if necessary.
If the insides of your ears are inflamed, dry, or irritated, make an appointment with your physician. He or she may recommend you take a different allergy medication, one that is less likely to causes dryness of the mucous membranes in your ears.
Aspirin is a drug that is known to cause a condition known as ototoxicity. This condition can lead to tinnitus, which is a general ringing in the ears. If you suffer from ringing, high pitched sounds, buzzing, beeping, or other abnormal sounds in your ears, it can interfere with your hearing aids. If you have tinnitus, talk to your physician about your aspirin consumption. If your doctor has recommended that you take a daily aspirin to reduce your risk for heart attack or stroke, do not stop taking it without medical clearance. Doing so many put you at risk for a serious cardiovascular event.
3. Untreated Sinus Infection
Chronic or untreated sinus infections can heighten your risk for blocked ear tubes and fluid in your ears. If you wear hearing aids and develop fluid in your ears, or if your Eustachian tubes become blocked, you will need to get treated so that your hearing devices can function properly.
If your sinus infection is bacterial in nature, your doctor may recommend that you take antibiotics, however, if it is viral or fungal in nature, antibiotics will do little to eliminate the infection. Drinking plenty of fluids, getting enough vitamin C, using a saline-based nasal spray, and getting enough rest will help your body fight off the infection so that you can hear better.
If you take antihistamines or aspirin, or if you have chronic sinus problems, make an appointment with your audiologist to evaluate your hearing aids. The sooner ear conditions are recognized and treated, the less likely you will be to experience further problems with your hearing.
For more information, contact a company like Hearing Specialists of DuPage.Share
23 June 2018
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