Hearing loss comes in many different ways, either gradually over time, or it can occur rapidly due to injury or disease. Depending on the type of hearing loss, it can be mild or more severe. It can significantly impact the ability to have conversations, enjoy social interactions, and feel comfortable in public.
Not all hearing loss is the same. Understanding the three different types of hearing loss is important to ensure the correct type of hearing aids is selected to revitalize hearing.
Conductive Hearing Loss
Conductive hearing loss occurs when the sound is not able to travel through the outer ear to the middle ear. For mild conditions, sounds may seem muffled or jumbled and not clear or crisp. Soft sounds may be very difficult to hear, and people may find they constantly have to turn up the television or the volume on the phone to hear.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss occurs in the inner ear. It typically involves the tiny hairs in your inner ear or the neural connection to the auditory cortex in the brain. This type of hearing loss is the most common, and it is typically in both ears and can be mild to profound.
This type of hearing loss can be congenital or acquired. Aging, exposure to loud noises, infections, trauma, and some medications can cause this type of hearing loss.
Mixed Hearing Loss
As the name implies, mixed hearing loss includes both sensorineural and conductive hearing loss. There may be a combination of causes that are both genetic as well as those found in sensorineural hearing loss that contribute to mixed hearing loss.
Hearing aids can be very effective in treating different types of hearing loss. The first step is to determine the type of hearing loss you are experiencing and choose the best hearing aid to help restore your ability to hear.