How People Become Deaf

| Thursday, March 3, 2011
By Owen Jones

Many individuals have asked themselves how you become deaf at some time or another. The fact is though that it is not always an easy question to answer, since some people are born deaf and others go deaf. Here are some of the main reasons of deafness in later life, that is, they are not birth defects.

Unrelenting very loud music can affect your eardrums and cause a degree of deafness or even total deafness. So, when your parents were warning you to turn the music down when you were a kid, they were talking sense. Studies have shown that loud music causes deafness.

Indeed, rock stars such as Eric Clapton believe that playing on stage in front of very powerful speakers is a direct contributory factor to deafness amongst rock musicians. Deafness from loud music is most likely to occur if the musicians play loud music on a regular basis, which is exactly what happens when a band is on tour.

Actors and actresses run a fairly high risk of having their hearing impaired by props and special effects. For example, President Reagan had to use a deaf aid in later life and he ascribed that to one day on a set when a gun was fired too close to his head by mistake. Imagine the effect on the hearing of repeated explosions and gun shots in a war film or a cowboy movie.

Sometimes children go deaf as the result of sickness or disease or even puberty. Sometimes this type of deafness wears off but sometimes it does not. Catarrh can also cause deafness in children although this may only be short-term.

Some babies are born deaf and sometimes the cause is genetic or it could be caused by such illnesses as cytomegalovirus or toxolasmosis. In fact, there several 'children's illnesses' that can lead to deafness if they are not treated speedily and correctly. Ototoxic drugs can also bring about deafness as can some other medications.

Premature babies that are were born with jaundice run the risk of being born deaf or of going deaf early in life as do babies that underwent a lack or shortage of oxygen because of an awkward delivery.

People lose their hearing steadily as they get older as well. This is a normal part of the aging process and it could be due to the collective effect of all the loud noise, all the illnesses and their remedies that we have sustained in our lives.

If you work in a loud environment such as a quarry, a construction site, in the military or at an airport, you should use ear protectors, otherwise your hearing will probably deteriorate slowly. So gradually, that you do not realize it until someone tells you that the TV is too loud.

You ought to take care of your hearing and instruct your children to do the same from an early age. Young peoples' hearing is not fully developed and so it can be more easily injured. Therefore, try to keep your young children away from loud noises, including loud music.

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