Hearing loss is a fairly common issue that affects many individuals around the world. Hearing loss means that you are either partially or totally unable to hear sounds. It is caused by numerous factors, but the most frequent ones are due to age and/or excessive noise exposure. Hearing loss could result from:
- A ruptured eardrum
- A progressive buildup of earwax
- Infection in the ears or tumors
- Inner ear damage
Here at the office of our otolaryngologist, Dr. Guilio Cavalli, in Pittsfield, MA, he can evaluate your case and recommend the most appropriate interventions for your hearing loss.
Hearing Loss Signs and Symptoms to Watch Out For
The general symptoms and signs of hearing loss that you may experience include:
- Speech and other sounds seem muffled.
- Difficulty hearing certain words, most especially if you’re exposed to loud background noise.
- Difficulty hearing consonants.
- A tendency to avoid some social settings or needing to get away from conversations due to hearing issues.
- Having to increase the volume of a song or video.
- Usually needing to request others to speak louder, slower, and more clearly.
Hearing Loss Risk Factors
The following are general risk factors that could likewise impact your hearing:
- Exposure to extremely loud noises. If you are exposed frequently to loud sounds, it could damage the cells in your inner ear.
- Aging. In the long run, structures in the inner ear naturally tend to degenerate.
- Genetic factors. Your genes can make you more prone to hearing loss.
- Recreational noises. Exposure to noises from things such as jet engines, motorcycle engines, or carpentry, could lead to permanent hearing loss.
- Occupational noises. Being exposed frequently to loud noises while doing factory work or construction could likewise damage the inside of your ears.
- Certain medications. Drugs like sildenafil, gentamicin, and particularly chemotherapy medications, could harm the inner ear. Furthermore, large doses of pain relievers and antimalarial drugs could temporarily affect your hearing.
- Some illnesses. Diseases that come with a high fever can damage the cochlea.
Prevention Tips for Hearing Loss
The kind of treatment that your otolaryngologist in Pittsfield, MA, to correct your hearing loss would largely depend on the severity and cause of your hearing loss. That being said, hearing problems inherited since birth cannot be prevented, but these extra measures could lessen your risk of developing hearing loss:
- Don’t poke deep into your ears with cotton swabs if you must use them.
- Wear earplugs to loud events.
- If your work environment involves loud noises, wear earmuffs or earplugs.
- Don’t set the volume of your gadgets or devices too loud.
If You Have Concerns or Questions About Hearing Loss, Call Us
Dial (413) 443-6116 to arrange an appointment with our otolaryngologist, Dr. Giulio Cavalli, here in our Pittsfield, MA, practice.
You’ve probably had days when you sound extremely raspy or husky. In some cases, people even lose their voices for a day or two. While hoarseness is usually harmless, there may be times that it requires professional treatment. Here at Giulio Cavalli Medical in Pittsfield, MA, our ENT doctor, Dr. Giulio Cavalli, can examine your condition, give you an accurate diagnosis, and recommend treatments to help you manage your hoarseness.
Common Causes of Hoarseness
Aside from overusing or misusing your voice due to shouting, cheering, singing loudly, etc., one of the most causes of hoarseness is laryngitis, which develops from infection, irritation, or overuse of the larynx (i.e. the voice box).
Normally, the vocal cords inside your larynx can close and open smoothly to form sounds via their vibrations and movements. When you have laryngitis, however, the vocal cords become irritated and swollen, which causes sound distortion, and therefore, hoarseness. In more serious laryngitis cases, your voice can even become virtually undetectable.
While most laryngitis cases are not serious, persistent hoarseness and chronic laryngitis could indicate a more severe underlying health problem. These can include vocal cord paralysis, vocal cysts, polyps, vocal fold hemorrhage, thyroid issues, and neurological disorder/diseases.
When to Visit Your Doctor for Hoarseness
Visit your ENT doctor if you’re been experiencing hoarseness for longer than three weeks, particularly if you don’t have an obvious condition, such as the flu or a cold, that could explain your symptoms. You should also immediately consult with our Pittsfield office if you are coughing up blood, have a lump or bump in the neck, have pain when swallowing/talking, have breathing difficulties, or if you lose your voice entirely for more than three days.
Worried About Your Hoarseness?
Schedule a consultation with your ENT doctor, Dr. Giulio Cavalli of Giulio Cavalli Medical in Pittsfield, MA, by dialing (413) 443-6116.
When you're diagnosed with hearing loss, it can be overwhelming. Hearing loss can lead to a reduced quality of life. Even people with mild hearing impairment experience difficulties, such as following a conversation or business meeting. When hearing loss starts, other things can be lost too, such as the ability to communicate and social connection. Even physical health can deteriorate. The office of Dr. Giulio Cavalli (located in Pittsfield, MA) offers treatments for hearing loss.
About Hearing Loss
Hearing loss is the total or partial loss of the ability to hear in one or both ears. The condition may be based in the outer, middle, or inner ear. Hearing loss can range from mild to profound. Some people have a hearing impairment from birth and others develop the condition at some point during their life.
Causes of Hearing Loss
Causes of hearing loss include exposure to loud noise, medications. Infection, a sudden change in pressure, and poking the eardrum with an object can also cause the eardrum to rupture and affect your hearing. Additionally, certain health conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes, can contribute to hearing loss.
Symptoms of Hearing Loss
The signs and symptoms of hearing loss can include loss of directionality of sound, difficulty understanding speech, and speech or sounds becoming dull, muffled or attenuated. Hearing loss may also have other accompanying symptoms including pressure or pain in the ears, vertigo, or ringing in the ear when no external sound is present.
Treatment for Hearing Loss
You should consult an ENT doctor or otolaryngologist if you're experiencing hearing loss. Treatment depends on the severity and cause of your hearing loss. Hearing loss may be treatable with medicine, surgery, or hearing aids. If you have a severe hearing impairment and gain limited benefit from conventional hearing devices, then a cochlear implant may be an option.
Being able to hear is an important part of an active and enjoyable life. If your hearing is affecting you, call the office of Dr. Giulio Cavalli right now to schedule an appointment in Pittsfield, MA. We offer a variety of treatments, such as hearing aids, that can help you hear again. We want you to live your best life!
Do you need a hearing aid? Hearing loss can have a big impact on your life, from your relationships to your career and well-being. Hearing aids are small electronic devices that are designed to improve your hearing. Giulio Cavalli Medical, which is located in Pittsfield, MA, offers treatments for hearing loss. Read on to get answers to frequently asked questions about hearing aids.
What is a hearing aid?
Hearing aids are small devices that you wear behind or in your ear. They make sounds louder so that people with a hearing impairment can listen, communicate, and participate fully in their daily activities. Hearing aids can help patients hear more in both noisy and quiet situations. Hearing aids do not prevent the progression of hearing loss over time. Your ENT doctor in Pittsfield can help you make an appropriate choice based on your degree of hearing loss, the shape of your outer ear, the shape and size of the ear canal, and any special features you need.
How do I know if I need one?
Firstly, you need to figure out if hearing loss is affecting your daily life. Your family members may have noticed you're not hearing as well as you did in the past. If you're having trouble communicating and keeping up with your regular lifestyle, this can have an impact on your decision. A medical exam is required before purchasing a hearing aid. Your doctor can test your hearing to determine if you have a hearing impairment and, if necessary, work with you on options that may help you. The test will assess how well you hear and your ability to understand words.
What types of hearing aids are available?
Several different types of hearing aids are available from tiny completely in-the-canal models to behind the ear hearing aids. Each style has specific performance characteristics that will be taken into consideration when you receive a recommendation. The smallest hearing instruments are not the right choice for everybody, nor does everybody need the most powerful type of hearing aid. If you have questions about which style is right for you, your doctor can explain the pros and cons of each style.
What is the best kind of hearing aid?
ENT doctors work with different hearing aid suppliers and offer a variety of styles. Your doctor will work closely with you to choose the best hearing instrument for your needs. There is no one best type of hearing aid. Your doctor can explain the different types of hearing instruments to you, and will select the type of hearing instruments most closely matched to your hearing loss, the anatomy of your ear and your lifestyle. All of these things must be considered in order to make the right recommendation for you.
How long will my hearing aid last?
The life of a hearing aid is about 5-7 years. Depending on the style, some may last longer. Many hearing aids are still functioning well after 7 years, while others may need repairs or a tuneup. After several years, hearing aids start to get worn out and will not function as well as you need them to function. Hearing aid technology is changing quickly, so think of it as upgrading your old hearing aid every few years for the latest and best model. Wearing an old hearing aid might cause you to miss important advancements in hearing technology.
How do I care for my hearing aid?
Always handle your hearing aids with care. Store your hearing aids in a safe, dry place away from kids and pets. Turn off the hearing aids when you're not using them. Periodically clean the battery contacts and remove any debris or earwax with a cloth. Don’t wear your hearing aids while swimming or in the shower. Batteries should be replaced on a regular basis. Schedule routine checkups with your ENT doctor for professional cleanings.
How long will it take to get used to one?
The length of time it takes to adapt to hearing instruments depends on how quickly you address your hearing loss. Research has shown that most patients can adjust to hearing instruments within one month with regular use. The longer you wait to get a hearing aid, the longer it will take your brain to make sense of the new sounds that are heard. It's important to wear your hearing aids on a regular basis so that you can adapt more quickly and more completely.
If you need a hearing aid, why wait? We can help you today! Call Giulio Cavalli Medical at (413) 443-6116 today to schedule an appointment for a hearing test in Pittsfield, MA. Hearing aids have improved the lives of millions of people. And they will do the same for you! We want you to live your best life possible!
Find out whether a hearing aid would make it easier to understand those around you.
While it should seem obvious whether you are dealing with hearing loss or not, for many it’s not that simple. Since it often comes about gradually, it can be difficult to pinpoint whether you are having trouble with your hearing or not. Find out the common signs of hearing loss so that you know when to schedule a screening with our Pittsfield, MA, otolaryngologist, Dr. Giulio Cavalli.
You Have Trouble Understanding People on the Phone
Do you find that you have to turn the volume up to the highest setting in order to understand what others are saying to you on the phone? If you find yourself turning the volume up often or straining to hear the person on the other end, then you may be dealing with hearing loss.
The TV is Too Loud…for Others
You find yourself straining to understand what is being said on the TV while everyone else around you seems to understand perfectly. Do members of your family complain about the volume of the TV when you are watching? If so, then it might be time to see our Pittsfield, MA, ENT doctor for an evaluation.
You Strain to Hear Those Around You
Do you find yourself mentally exhausted by the end of the day because you’ve been working hard to follow conversations? If you find that conversing with colleagues, friends, and family has you feeling worn out and tired both physically and mentally then you could be dealing with hearing loss.
You’ve Given Up on Trying to Understand People in Loud Places
Do you find it nearly impossible to understand anyone when standing in a crowd or sitting in a loud restaurant? If you find yourself unable to follow a conversation or disengaging from the group while everyone else is actively engaged and talking, then hearing loss might be to blame. Luckily, a hearing aid can help improve certain sounds, making it easier to understand what people are saying even in noisier settings.
You Misunderstand What People Say
Besides saying “What?” a lot, you may also find that what you thought you heard wasn’t what you heard at all (yikes!). Misunderstanding what people say can be frustrating and—at times—downright embarrassing. This is a warning sign of high-frequency hearing loss, which can affect your ability to properly hear certain sounds and pitches.
Concerned? Give Us a Call!
If you suspect that you might have some degree of hearing loss, then it’s time to dial (413) 443-6116 to schedule a hearing screening at our Pittsfield office. Remember, the sooner you seek treatment for your hearing loss, the better! Let us help you become part of the conversation again.
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