Dr. Nagler's Tinnitus Corner
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jrose1967

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 #1 

Hi Dr. Nagler,
Hope you're well and enjoying the summer. I've got another question to which I cannot find a consistent answer.

I have mild/moderate high-frequency hearing loss and tinnitus. Left ear is a bit worse than my right ear. Is some level of high-frequency hearing loss considered "normal" as we get older? (I just turned 50 in January.)

Oh, and does the fact that I have a bit of high-frequency hearing loss already make my ears more susceptible to future damage than someone without hearing loss. In essence, do I need to be more cautious around loud noises than the general public?


Okay, I guess that's two questions. Have a great day.

 

Dr. Nagler

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 #2 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrose1967
I've got another question to which I cannot find a consistent answer.

Just a bit off-topic (and possibly picky) here, but what folks in search of good information should be seeking is a correct answer, regardless of whether or not it is "consistent." The challenge, then, lies in how to figure out if an answer is correct. And given all the really bad information out there about tinnitus, that challenge can indeed be a formidable one.

Quote:
I have mild/moderate high-frequency hearing loss and tinnitus. Left ear is a bit worse than my right ear. Is some level of high-frequency hearing loss considered "normal" as we get older? (I just turned 50 in January.)

Yes, some level of high-frequency hearing loss is to be expected as we get older. We lose 0.5% of the hair cells within our cochlea for every year of our adult lives, resulting in this "normal" hearing loss. The medical term is presbycusis.

Quote:
Oh, and does the fact that I have a bit of high-frequency hearing loss already make my ears more susceptible to future damage than someone without hearing loss. In essence, do I need to be more cautious around loud noises than the general public?

No. But please bear in mind that the general public is itself woefully ignorant about the need to be cautious around loud noises. So I wouldn't necessarily use what John Q. Public does as a guide for what you yourself should do in that regard.

Hope this helps.

Stephen M. Nagler, M.D.
Atlanta Tinnitus Consultants, LLC


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Dr. Nagler's Tinnitus Corner is provided for education and information only. It is not intended for the purpose of providing medical care and should in no way substitute for appropriate in-person consultations with qualified healthcare professionals. By using this site, participants agree to hold Dr. Nagler and Atlanta Tinnitus Consultants, LLC harmless with respect to any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage arising from following the postings herein.