Hearing is an important aspect of our everyday lives. If there is some sort of damage to either one’s outer ear, middle ear, or inner ear, hearing loss can arise. Hearing loss can occur both at the time of birth or over time as a result of an injury or disorder. Any type of hearing loss that emerges in children will affect their ability to hear, but it can also alter their ability to develop speech, language, and social skills as they evolve in life. Hearing Loss and the Evolution of Children
The different varieties of hearing loss are known as conductive, sensorineural, mixed, and central. Conductive hearing loss is described as an issue occurring in either the outer or middle ear. One of the main problems could occur from an obstruction to the external ear canal which results in sound not being able to move to the tympanic membrane to the middle ear to the inner ear and finally to the brain. Another cause of conductive hearing loss is when there is the fluid present in the middle ear, which is called otitis media. These are examples of how a conductive hearing loss can occur over time.
However, this hearing loss can also emerge because an individual is born with an irregularity to their tympanic membrane or to their ossicles that are located in the middle ear. In many cases, this type of hearing loss is considered temporary. In this case, it is able to be treated with medicine or if needed, surgery. Sensorineural hearing loss is a category that differs from conductive as it results from an issue that arises in the inner ear as opposed to the outer or middle ear. It stems from damage to the hair cells in the inner ear that help in transducing mechanical movements into electrical impulses which are then sent to the brain. With damage to the hair cells, sound vibrations are not able to be converted into electric signals and those signals do not get sent to the brain. Typically, a sensorineural hearing loss happens at birth, or, in other words, it is genetic. Hearing Loss and the Evolution of Children