Scott Marquardt, Au.D.
Understanding Hearing Loss
What is hearing loss? Something that creeps up on you as you get older or that sudden ringing you get in your ears after a loud concert? It’s both, actually, and much more.
There are lots of reasons that you may lose the ability to hear certain sounds. Understanding a bit about hearing loss can help you take the right steps towards managing your hearing loss and enjoying better hearing health.
To get you started, let’s cover the basics of hearing loss.
Hearing loss by numbers
All hearing loss involves losing the ability to hear certain sounds and can be broadly split into 4 categories:
Soft speech, speech across a room, or speech against lots of background noise is difficult to hear and understand.
Normal speech is hard to hear and understand, even when someone is talking to you from a close distance.
You can’t hear or understand most conversational speech and only hear very loud sounds.
You only sense loud sounds as vibrations.
When you get your hearing checked at Clarity Hearing, we’ll tell you which category your hearing loss fits into and we’ll also show you an audiogram. This is simply a technical word for a graph that shows you where your hearing loss sits along the scale of pitch (from low to high) and volume (from soft to loud). Take a look at this short video from ReSound to find out more:
Hearing loss can also be divided up according to type depending on which part of your ear is affected. There are 3 parts to your ears – inner, middle, and outer – and 3 types of hearing loss:
This is when sounds can’t reach the inner ear because of a problem with the middle or outer ear.
This is when sounds are not transmitted to the brain because of problems with the inner ear or the nerve that connects the ears to the brain.
This is a mix of conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.
Now that you know a bit about how hearing loss works, how do you know if you have a hearing loss?
Here are a few signs to look out for:
- Trouble hearing what people are saying, especially when there is background noise
- Having to turn the volume on the TV up
- Difficulty understanding people on the phone
- Asking people to repeat themselves more often than usual
- Headaches or fatigue after having to listen to people in noisy environments.
If any of this sounds familiar or you are at all worried about your hearing, get in touch with us at Clarity Hearing. We’ll arrange a hearing test for you and from there, we can get to work on helping you to overcome your hearing difficulties.