As many as 15% of adults have some degree of hearing loss. Are you always speaking louder than normal? Do you have difficulty hearing the TV or someone speaking?
These are both signs of hearing loss.
But did you know that there are different degrees of hearing loss? Many people believe that hearing loss is simply the inability to hear. However, we use five degrees of hearing loss to determine how severe someone’s hearing loss is.
Read on to learn more about the degrees of hearing loss and how to determine which degree you may have.
What Are the Degrees of Hearing Loss?
To understand the degrees of hearing loss, we first need to know how sound is measured. Sound intensity is measured in units called decibels. Decibels are abbreviated as dB. Hearing thresholds are the lowest level of sound or softest sound that a person can hear and are measured in units called decibels Hearing Level. These units are abbreviated dBHL. The dBHL is what separates the five degrees of hearing loss from each other.
The degrees of hearing loss are:
Normal hearing: 0 to 20 dBHL
Mild hearing loss: 21 to 40 dBHL
Moderate hearing loss: 41 to 60 dBHL
Severe hearing loss: 61 to 90 dBHL
Profound hearing loss: 91+ dBHL
What degree of hearing loss you have depends on your hearing thresholds. You have mild hearing loss if your thresholds are between 21 to 40 dBHL. With this hearing loss, you could have difficulty hearing soft sounds like a whisper. You have a moderate hearing loss if your hearing thresholds are in the 41 to 60 dBHL range, and you could have difficulty hearing conversations. You have normal hearing thresholds if the softest sounds you can hear fall between 0 to 20 dBHL.
It’s also possible for someone to have different degrees of hearing loss across their audible frequency range. So you could have mild hearing loss in low frequencies and severe hearing loss in the high pitches.
How do you know what your hearing thresholds are? First, you would need to see an audiologist for a hearing evaluation.
What Is an Audiologist?
An audiologist is a licensed healthcare professional specializing in diagnosing and treating hearing loss. Audiologists are trained to provide the resources you need to manage your hearing loss.
An audiologist will need to conduct a hearing test to determine how to help you hear your best. A thorough hearing evaluation can take about an hour. During the hearing test, the audiologist will perform a series of tests to determine if you have a hearing loss and what type and degree of hearing loss you have.
Then the audiologist will develop a treatment plan based on the test results. The treatment plan may include hearing aids, assistive listening devices, or cochlear implants.
It’s Time to Get Treated
Comprehensive Hearing Solutions offers extensive testing and complete solutions for all degrees of hearing loss. Our team is passionate about helping people hear their best and improve their quality of life.
If you’re in the Houma, LA region, schedule a consultation today and be part of the conversation.