Deafness is usually the result of inner ear or nerve damage. It may be caused by a congenital defect, injury, disease, certain medication, exposure to loud noise or age-related wear and tear. The chief symptom is an inability to hear sound. For some, hearing may be possible with surgery or a hearing device. Lip-reading skills, written or printed text and sign language may help with communication.
Hearing loss can have causes that aren't due to underlying disease. Examples include too much ear wax, loud or prolonged noise exposure, ageing, getting an object stuck in the ear or medication side effects.
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