Hearing loss is a problem for nearly 20% of the global population. However, not all hearing loss is the same. While some people experience mild to moderate hearing loss, others can’t hear anything except very loud sounds. 

Before you consider hearing aids for yourself or a loved one, it’s vital to understand the difference between mild, moderate, and severe hearing loss. Once you do, you’ll be much better equipped to select a hearing aid that will work for your current condition.

Mild Hearing Loss

A mild degree of hearing loss has a threshold of 26 to 40 decibels. For example, if you cannot hear sounds unless they are at least 30 decibels, you can be diagnosed with mild hearing loss. While some may believe that mild hearing loss isn’t a very serious condition, it has the potential to impact your life in many noticeable ways.

When you have mild hearing loss, deciphering whispers, rustling leaves, the hum of household appliances, or a babbling brook may be nearly impossible. You may have difficulty hearing someone speak during a conversation in a noisy or crowded setting. Softer consonant sounds can be challenging to understand, while hard, forceful vowels are much easier to hear.

Moderate Hearing Loss

Moderate hearing loss is classified within a range of 41 to 55 decibels. This is the stage at which hard vowels can become hard to understand. You may be able to hear people speaking, but it’s likely harder to comprehend their words. Consequently, keeping up with a conversation can be tricky. 

If you have moderate hearing loss, you may be unable to hear whether your coffeemaker is brewing or whether it’s raining outside. You might miss out on the hustle and bustle of conversations in your office and feel socially isolated. 

Severe Hearing Loss

The severe hearing loss range is 71 to 90 decibels. With this degree of hearing loss, normal voices are inaudible without assistance. You also may not be able to hear the washing machine or dryer, city traffic, or a ringing doorbell. 

Powerful hearing aids are a much-needed tool for people who have severe hearing loss. Even if they wear a hearing aid, it will likely be helpful for severe hearing loss patients to learn to read lips to help with speech comprehension. 

Can Hearing Aids Help with Your Hearing Loss?

Hearing loss happens for several reasons, including:

  • Loud noises that damage hair cells 
  • Earwax buildup blocking the ear canal
  • Infections or growths affecting the outer or middle ear
  • Certain medications that harm the inner ear
  • Illnesses like meningitis, which may cause cochlear problems

Whether a hearing aid can help your hearing loss depends on the underlying cause. Hearing aids are often life-changing for those with noise-induced hearing loss. However, if the hearing loss is due to illness, infection, or earwax buildup, you might focus on resolving those issues when you seek professional help for your hearing problems.

No matter the reason you are experiencing hearing loss, it’s crucial for you to see an audiologist right away. In many cases, even people with mild hearing loss can benefit from a hearing aid, and wearing one may stop the condition from reducing your quality of life and ability to feel connected.

Effective Treatment Options for Hearing Loss from Arcade Hearing Aid Center 

Hearing loss of any degree is a serious condition that can profoundly affect every area of your life, including your ability to communicate with others, do your job, and drive a car safely. 

Depending on the severity of your hearing loss, OTC hearing aids may not be strong or sophisticated enough to help you. This is why seeing a Santa Monica, CA, audiologist is always a good idea. Your audiologist understands the spectrum of hearing loss, can properly test for a precise diagnosis, and will help you decide which hearing aids will give you the expected results. 

Book an appointment with us today at Arcade Hearing Aid Center and discover how our audiologists can help you improve your hearing and communication so you can continue to enjoy the world around you.