There is a long list of past “treatments” for hearing loss. It’s important to note that none of these were ever scientifically proven to work and can, in most cases, actually do more harm than good. Thankfully, doctors today do not prescribe such bizarre remedies. Today’s technologies provide incredible sound options. Nevertheless, it’s still interesting to learn about these odd methods for treating hearing loss!
Isolation is one example of a treatment that did more harm than good. Some doctors thought that isolation would be a successful treatment because they thought it would give one’s ears the rest they needed in order to recover from the every-day use. However, this method would only lead to high stress levels. In addition, if the isolation was prolonged, the long-term health effects could result in heart disease or even mental decline.
Another potential cure – bloodletting. This practice of cutting an open wound in order to let the blood out was typical for many generations. In many instances, leeches were used as a way of getting the blood out. Direct health effects of bloodletting can range from vivid hallucinations to fainting. Today, only in rare cases in which blood volume levels need to be lower, do they practice bloodletting.
Around the 1800’s, many companies argued that their artificial eardrums would cure deafness. However, today, we know this was only a ploy to obtain a long list of customers willing to spend all of their money. The eardrums were usually metal and sat directly inside the ear. The companies then said the instruments were allowing sounds to resonate throughout the ear canal.
Insertion of Foreign Objects into the Ear
In the past, many people have tried inserting a variety of objects into the ear in order to cure their ailment. Many believed that the objects inserted would eventually cause the ear to lower its pressure. Some used twigs, others tried more sophisticated means. In Beethoven’s case, his doctor suggested that he use almond oil earplugs. Unfortunately, it goes without saying that this method was an unsuccessful one. Today, we know that the use of any objects not meant for the ear is not a smart move! Doing so often results in surgical removal and does irreversible harm to the eardrum in most cases.
One of the most desperate attempts for a cure was voluntarily jumping from high places. They thought that this might release any pressure within the ear. The only thing that came of this, however, was a couple of broken bones!
Today’s Solutions to Hearing Loss
With new technology, comes new solutions. While there is no current cure for hearing loss, improvements can be made.
One way of doing so is to opt for hearing aids. They provide a hearing assist and don’t require surgery unless you have a blockage in the ear that needs to be taken care of. Many of the hearing aids today even offer additional features beyond hearing aids of the past. Bluetooth technology allows the hearing aids to link with television sets and telephones. This can prove useful to those who are frequent users. Some even have the capability to filter out background noises in the environment, allowing you to hear more effectively.
Cochlear implants are another option. These are implants and require surgery for placement. They release a better quality of hearing when you are comparing to traditional hearing aids. However, there are several drawbacks such as the cost. It could set you back as much as $50,000.
While there were plenty of hearing loss treatments that were unavailing of a cure, technology is always making progress. Perhaps we will find an actual cure one day. Until then, the options that exist today continue to improve and make an everlasting impact on everyone’s lives who decide to utilize them.