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Hearing Loss

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When to Call a Doctor

Call911or other emergency services immediately if:

Call a doctor immediately if you:

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Severe Hearing Loss

Severe hearing loss means you can hear some sounds, but very poorly. You may not be able to hear someone speaking, even if they are using a normal voice. You may be able to hear only very loud sounds. Hearing loss can happen in many different ways to people of all ages. It’s different for everyone. The key is to work with your health care team to find ways help you make the most of the hearing you have. There are many treatments that can help you or your child enjoy life.

Read the Severe Hearing Loss article > >

Call your doctor if you:

  • Have hearing loss that you think may be caused by earwax.
  • Have hearing loss after taking medicine.
  • Have hearing loss after having cold or flu symptoms.
  • Have hearing loss after traveling on an airplane.
  • Feel your hearing is gradually getting worse.
  • Wonder if you need hearing aids.
  • Think your baby or child may not be hearing well.

If you think you have a hearing problem, you might choose to see an audiologist.

Watchful waiting

Watchful waiting is when you and your doctor watch symptoms to see if the health problem improves on its own. Although hearing loss is not usually dangerous, it can affect your personal safety. It can also reduce how much you can do in the workplace and at home and limit you socially. It is important that you talk to your doctor about hearing loss.

Who to see

Hearing loss can be diagnosed by:

If your doctor suspects or diagnoses hearing loss, he or she may have you see an ear, nose, and throat specialist (otolaryngologist) or an audiologist.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 14, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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