A concussion is a traumatic head injury caused by a blow that moves the brain back and forth within the skull. This can create chemical changes in the brain or damage cells. One of the side-effects of a concussion can be hearing loss. Read on to find out about hearing loss after a concussion.
What is behind it?
A head injury can damage the parts of the brain responsible for making audio waves intelligible. If the temporal or parietal lobes are damaged, then you can suffer from hearing loss. This means that even if your ear is functioning perfectly, you’ll still suffer from hearing problems until the brain has healed. Alternatively, hearing loss can emerge from a head injury when the mechanisms inside the ear responsible for sourcing sounds are damaged. If this mechanical process is disrupted, then the ear won’t transmit sounds to the brain at all. This problem will continue until the ear heals.
What audio problems can be triggered by head injury?
There are a wide range of audio problems that can be triggered by head injury. One of the most common problems you might suffer is tinnitus – this is characterised by hearing a consistent ringing sound and experiencing sensitivity to loud noise. Other auditory problems you might suffer could include hearing loss, a lower range of noise, aural fullness and auditory processing problems. Hearing loss is a particular problem if the head injury has caused inflammation or if your ear was damaged. By contrast, you could suffer balance problems from a head injury too – and this is connected to your ear. This can result in vertigo, balance issues, motion sickness and consistent dizziness.
How is it treated?
If you’re suffering from tinnitus, then there are a few treatment options. State-of-the-art hearing aids can help mask the ringing sound. Meanwhile, cognitive behavioural therapy can also help you overcome hearing sensitivity and ringing. On the other hand, if your hearing loss was caused by damage to the ear then you have options too. Some injuries, such as a ruptured eardrum, will heal of their own accord in about a month. Meanwhile, damaged ossicular bones can be repaired surgically or even replaced. Ultimately, if you notice that you have a hearing problem following a head injury, the first step is to seek an evaluation from a medical professional.
If you suspect that a concussion has led to hearing loss, then you should get medical help. By booking a five-minute online hearing test, you can work towards diagnosing the issue and you can begin your journey towards regaining your quality of life.