Types & Degrees of Hearing Loss
Depending on which part of the ear is damaged, there are four types of hearing loss.
1. Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss typically occurs as you get older, but some people are born with this type of loss. Most people say they are able to hear, but don’t always understand what people are saying. It’s often confused with nerve deafness when it’s really due to problems with the inner ear.
2. Conductive Hearing Loss
When hearing loss is due to problems with the outer ear or middle ear it is called conductive hearing loss. A conductive loss is caused by something that stops sounds from getting through the external or middle ear.
3. Mixed Hearing Loss
Mixed hearing loss is a combination of conductive and sensorineural hearing loss and means that there may be damage in both the outer or middle ear and in the inner ear.
4. Single-sided Deafness
When a person has no hearing or very little hearing in only one ear and normal hearing in the other ear, it is classified as single-sided deafness.
There are Five Different Degrees of Hearing Loss
1. Mild Hearing Loss
A person with mild hearing loss is able to hear the more intense vowel sounds, but may miss some of the softer consonant sounds and need to ask people to speak up or to repeat themselves. They also may have difficulty hearing people who speak softly and the voices of young children.
2. Moderate Hearing Loss
A person with a moderate hearing loss has a difficult time hearing vowel sounds addition to missing consonant sounds. The person will often find that without hearing aids they may be able to hear, but they can’t always understand what is being said.
3. Moderately Severe Hearing Loss
For a person with moderately severe hearing, speech becomes inaudible without the use of hearing aids and even with them, speech still may still be difficult to understand.
4. Severe Hearing Loss
Without hearing aids, speech is inaudible for someone with severe hearing loss, but they are able to hear sounds like a baby crying or a dog barking.
For a person with profound hearing loss, speech is inaudible without hearing aids, but they can hear very loud sounds like a lawn mower or jet airplane.