Audiologist Questions Hearing loss

Is deafness with age a heriditary problem?

My father became hard of hearing at the age of 72 and my grandfather also lost his hearing as he aged. Are there chances that I will lose my hearing ability too? Is this hereditary or an aging issue?

1 Answer

It can be due to both aging and genetics; however, genetic hearing loss typically develops before 50 years. Presbycusis, hearing loss due to aging, can start to develop around 50 years or older. Other factors that can contribute to rapidly declining hearing loss at an older age would be if the individual has a history of being exposed to noise (i.e., guns, machinery, music, etc), if they have a chronic health condition (i.e. heart or kidney disease, diabetes, etc) or if they are taking medications that are toxic to the hearing system (i.e. loop diuretics, cisplatin, carboplatin). If you're concerned about developing hearing loss, I would see an audiologist and get a baseline hearing evaluation and get it rechecked every 1-2 years or sooner if you feel like you're noting changes. 
Hope that helps. 

Dr. Fling