What is Hearing Loss?
Hearing loss occurs when someone has developed a partial inability to hear. There are different types of hearing loss, and many different reasons for it.
Hearing loss, also known as hearing impairment, is a partial or total inability to hear. Hearing loss can occur in one or both ears and can be temporary or permanent. In Australia, 3.6 million people are affected by some form of hearing loss and, by 2060, it is estimated that this will increase to 7.8 million (Deloitte, 2017).
In children, hearing problems can affect the ability to learn spoken language and in adults, it can create difficulties with social interaction and at work. In some people, particularly older people, hearing loss can result in loneliness.
There are several possible causes for hearing loss in children and adults, whether it is congenital or acquired. Several other factors may also play a role in causing hearing loss, including: genetics, aging, exposure to noise, some infections, birth complications, trauma to the ear, and certain medications or toxins.
A common condition that results in hearing loss is chronic ear infections. Hearing loss is diagnosed when a person is unable to hear 25 decibels in at least one ear.
|Hearing loss categories||dB|
|Mild||25 – 40 dB|
|Moderate||41 – 55 dB|
|Severe||71 – 90 dB|
|Profound||Greater than 90 dB|
Sensorineural hearing loss is one of the main 3 types of hearing loss and it primarily affects the inner ear.
Conductive hearing loss happens when much of the sound is lost before it has reached either the inner-ear's hair cells or the brain.
This occurs when the brain is not able to make sense of the information transmitted through sound, such as words.
An audiogram is a graph that shows how well you are able to hear according to the normal thresholds.
There are range of technological devices, assistive technology and hearing technology designed to support people with hearing loss.