The 3 Types of Hearing Loss
First, The Hearing Loss Facts and Stats…
- Did you know that 1 out of 5 Americans have a hearing loss? It currently is the third most common health problem in the US.
- More than 50% of the people with hearing loss are younger than 65. A variety of conditions can cause hearing loss in both the young and older population. Depending on what type of hearing loss you may have, treatment options are available ranging from a simple wax cleaning, treating an infection or possibly hearing aids.
- Tinnitus, a condition that causes ringing or buzzing in the ears, can be treated with the help of hearing aids.
- Untreated hearing loss can affect the ability to understand speech and can negatively impact social and emotional well-being. Hearing loss in the older population has been linked to a contributor of depression due to feeling excluded and unable to communicate comfortably in social settings.
- The vast majority of Americans with hearing loss have their hearing effectively treated with hearing instruments
Hearing loss can be mild, moderate, moderately-severe, severe, or profound, and it can vary across frequencies. Hearing loss can be gradual and will typically worsen over time. It is measured in terms of decibels (dB). Higher dB levels indicate worse hearing and low dB levels indicate better hearing. For example, if a person’s hearing loss is measured at 100 dB, it indicates just about complete deafness in that ear for a certain noise frequency level. A score of 0 indicates normal hearing and a score less than 0 indicates above-average hearing.
Youe Guide to Hearing Loss, in decibels:
- Normal hearing range: 0-25 dB for adults and 0-15 dB for children
- Mild hearing loss range: 25-39 dB
- Moderate hearing loss range: 40-69 dB
- Severe hearing loss range: 70-94 dB
- Profound hearing loss range: 95+ dB (total deafness at 100 dB)
The 3 Types of Hearing Loss
- Conductive hearing loss
- Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL)
- Mixed hearing loss
Conductive Hearing Loss
Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound waves are not properly passed from the outer ear to the middle ear.
What Are The Causes of Conductive Hearing Loss?
- Malformation of the outer ear, ear canal, or middle ear
- Fluid in the inner ear
- Ear infection
- Malfunction of the Eustachian tube
- Eardrum that’s perforated
- Tumors in the ear
- Otosclerosis – overgrowth of bone in the ear which prevents necessary vibration when stimulated by sound
Sensorineural Hearing Loss (SNHL)
Sensorineural hearing loss is related to nerve problems in the inner ear, more specifically in the cochlea.
What Are The Causes of Sensorineural Hearing Loss?
- Loud noise
- Head trauma
- Disease or a virus, i.e., autoimmune inner ear disease, Meniere’s disease
- Congenital hearing loss
- Aging – damaged hair cells result
- Malformation of the inner ear
Mixed Hearing Loss
Mixed hearing loss is a combination of Sensorineural hearing loss and Conductive hearing loss indicating problems with all three parts of the ear: outer, middle, and inner.
What Are The Causes of Mixed Hearing Loss?
- Refer to Sensorineural and Conductive hearing loss causes
Hearing aids are offered in the following sizes. While some sizes offer better amplification for different types of hearing loss, we can ensure you a comfortable fit with minimal visibility.
Listen 2 Life Hearing Center is the expert in assessing and diagnosing hearing loss and disorders. In addition, we are thoroughly familiar with just about every heating aid model and type, from Oticon to Signia (Siemens), Sonic, Phonak, and Starkey.