Woman in pain for tinnitus, sound and noise problem. Healthcare, pressure and hearing loss with girl suffering with muffled hearing.

There are a wide variety of reasons for muffled hearing. In most instances, this condition is temporary. In other instances, muffled hearing can be a harbinger of more significant hearing-related problems. That’s because, for the most part, hearing loss is a slowly developing condition. Symptoms develop slowly over a long time period.

Typically, one of the first noticeable symptoms is a sense that sounds feel muffled, distorted, or quieter. However, it’s important to mention that muffled hearing in and of itself is not always an indication of long-term hearing loss. Each year millions of individuals experience muffled hearing.

You may be wondering: when should I be concerned about muffled hearing? The answer depends on various factors. Understanding the root cause of your muffled hearing is critical to finding the correct treatment plan. Added damage can be avoided and your hearing can get back to normal with some prompt solutions. You will be able to go back to enjoying the sounds of your life after you get us to assist you with some successful treatments.

Muffled Hearing – what exactly is it?

Muffled hearing takes place when sound is not able to travel through your outer, middle, and inner ear in the way that it usually does. A rather noticeable decline in sound quality is the result. In the majority of cases, people with muffled hearing can still hear some or even most things, but things sound quieter or jumbled. Discerning speech and language can be especially challenging.

Your ears will often also feel clogged up when your hearing is muffled. Sometimes, when you’re on a plane or suffering from a cold you might experience this feeling. Muffled hearing isn’t always accompanied by this feeling, however.

Causes of muffled hearing

Muffled hearing can be caused by a wide variety of issues. In order to establish the suitable course of treatment, it’s important to determine the root cause. Some of the most common causes of muffled hearing include the following:

  • Travel: Altitude changes, such as when you’re on a plane, can lead to a feeling of muffled ears. In most instances, this feeling will pass quickly and your hearing will go back to normal.
  • Sensorineural hearing loss: Sometimes, muffled hearing can be the consequence of noise-related hearing loss. Sadly, this kind of hearing loss is usually permanent. One of the very first noticeable symptoms is muffled hearing; but damage to your stereocilia has usually already occurred by the time you notice the distorted sounds. If you don’t seek out treatment quickly, your hearing will rapidly get worse.
  • Meniere’s Disease: Meniere’s Disease is a long-term balance and hearing issue. Dizziness, balance issues, tinnitus, and muffled ears will manifest over time as a result of this disease. There’s no cure for Meniere’s Disease, but symptoms can be treated.
  • Infection: Inflammation of the ear canal will frequently accompany issues such as ear infections or sinus infections. This will reduce your hearing ability by causing the ear canal to swell shut. Once the base infection clears, any inflammation it caused should also clear.
  • Age-related hearing loss: Most people will experience decreasing hearing as they get older. After all, there are few senses as sharp when you are 80 as they were when you are 18. Over time, muffled hearing can be the result of this natural diminishing of your hearing.
  • Earwax buildup: Normally, earwax is a good thing. The health of your ear canal relies on the generation of earwax. However, excessive earwax can ultimately cause muffled hearing (or even hearing loss). This earwax can typically be loosened up by using a few drops of hydrogen peroxide. Do not use a cotton swab to try to free the earwax, as cotton swabs can compact your earwax and make the issue worse. We can help if the issue continues.

Depending on the underlying cause, the precise symptoms of muffled hearing will differ.

Can muffled hearing be cured?

Not all kinds of muffled hearing can be cured. The base cause of your muffled hearing will establish the treatment method. We may use some special tools to help clear out your ear canal if, for instance, earwax buildup is at the root of your muffled hearing. Antibiotics are usually prescribed if your muffled hearing is being caused by an infection.

When it comes to sensorineural hearing loss, the emphasis changes to symptom management rather than a total cure. That’s because sensorineural hearing loss can’t be reversed. However, symptoms can be managed. There might be several approaches to this treatment including a set of hearing aids.

Hearing aids can help you remain connected to loved ones and go about your daily activities without a significantly noticeable effect, particularly when this process is started quickly.

Avoiding muffled hearing

No matter what you do, some kinds of muffled hearing can’t be avoided. For instance, ear infections and sinus infections are hard to reliably avoid.

However, in most cases, routine hearing tests can help you avoid many of the causes of muffled hearing and identify any permanent hearing loss early. Call us for an appointment right away.

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

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