Call or Text Us Today! 760-289-3838
Robby Young's Hearing Aid Center - Coachella Valley, CA

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

There are a large number of reasons for muffled hearing. For most individuals, it’s a short-term experience. In other instances, muffled hearing can be a precursor of more serious hearing-related issues. Partly, that’s because, outside of sudden hearing loss, hearing loss is usually not a condition that progresses suddenly. Symptoms appear slowly over a long period of time.

One of the earliest symptoms of slowly developing long-term hearing loss is the feeling that your hearing is muffled. However, it’s important to mention that muffled hearing in and of itself is not always an indication of permanent hearing loss. Each year millions of individuals experience muffled hearing.

You might be wondering: when do I need to be worried about muffled hearing? Generally, the answer tends to vary. Recognizing the root cause of your muffled hearing is crucial to finding the correct treatment approach. Added damage can be avoided and your hearing can get back to normal with some prompt solutions. You will be able to get 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 move through your outer, middle, and inner ear in the way that it usually does. A very noticeable decline in sound fidelity is the result. In most instances, those with muffled hearing can still hear some or even most things, but things sound quieter or distorted. This might especially impact your ability to hear and understand voices and spoken language.

Your ears will frequently also feel plugged up when your hearing is muffled. Sometimes, when you’re on a plane or suffering from a cold you might experience this feeling. This plugged feeling, however, doesn’t always come with muffled hearing.

Causes of muffled hearing

Muffled hearing can be caused by all kinds of problems. Identifying the underlying cause of your muffled hearing can be essential in developing a successful treatment plan. Here are several of the most common causes:

  • Travel: The changing air pressure related to air travel can frequently cause a feeling of fullness in the ear, accompanied by muffled hearing. In most instances, this feeling will go away quickly and your hearing will go back to normal.
  • Meniere’s Disease: Meniere’s Disease is a chronic balance and hearing issue. Over time, this disease can cause tinnitus, hearing loss (frequently starting with muffled hearing), and dizziness or loss of balance. There’s no cure for Meniere’s Disease, but symptoms can be managed.
  • Age-associated hearing loss: As you age, your hearing can diminish due to natural causes. Obviously, when you’re 80 all of your senses will be less sharp than when you were 18. Over time, muffled hearing can be the outcome of this natural diminishing of your hearing.
  • Sensorineural hearing loss: Hearing loss caused by noise-related damage can sometimes cause muffled hearing. Regrettably, this kind of hearing loss is usually permanent. Muffled hearing is often one of the earliest detectable symptoms; but by the time you notice the distorted sounds, damage to your stereocilia has most likely already taken place. If you don’t find treatment quickly, your hearing will rapidly get worse.
  • Earwax buildup: Usually, earwax is a good thing. It helps keep your ear canal healthy. But muffled hearing (and in some instances even hearing loss) can be the result of too much earwax. This earwax can usually be loosened up by using a couple of drops of hydrogen peroxide. Do not use a cotton swab to attempt to dislodge the earwax, as cotton swabs can compact your earwax and make the problem worse. If the problem persists, come in and see us.
  • Infection: Swelling of the ear canal will frequently come with problems like 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.

The exact symptoms of muffled hearing will differ depending on the base cause.

Can muffled hearing be cured?

Not all forms of muffled hearing can be cured. The root cause of your muffled hearing will establish the treatment strategy. We may use some specialized tools to help clear out your ear canal if, for example, earwax buildup is at the root of your muffled hearing. Antibiotics are typically prescribed if your muffled hearing is being caused by an infection.

Symptom management is usually the strategy when you have sensorineural hearing loss as opposed to a cure. That’s because there’s no cure for sensorineural hearing loss. However, symptoms can be managed. There might be numerous approaches to this treatment including a set of hearing aids.

Hearing aids can help you stay connected to loved ones and go about your day-to-day activities without a significantly noticeable impact, especially when this process is started quickly.

How to steer clear of muffled hearing in the first place

Some types of muffled hearing are difficult to avoid, no matter what. Infections, for instance, can’t always be avoided.

However, in most cases, regular hearing tests can help you avoid many of the causes of muffled hearing and detect any permanent hearing loss early. These checkups can help you stay on top of your hearing health and get treatment promptly.

Call Today to Set Up an Appointment

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.
Why wait? You don't have to live with hearing loss. Call or Text Us Today