According to a study published in the American Journal of Public Health, “An estimated 25.4 million, 10.7 million, 1.8 million, and 0.4 million US residents aged 12 years or older, respectively, have mild, moderate, severe, and profound better-ear hearing loss.” In this post, we break down exactly what it means to have each of these degrees of hearing loss in order to help you identify how severe your hearing loss is.
Slight Hearing Loss
If you have slight hearing loss, it means you have trouble hearing sounds between 16 to 25 decibels (dB), which is about the level of whispered voices and rustling leaves. In most cases, this degree of hearing loss does not require treatment.
Mild Hearing Loss
Mild hearing loss refers to difficulty hearing sounds between 26 and 40 dB – about the volume of birds chirping and the refrigerator humming. You may also have trouble hearing children’s voices, distinguishing voices in background noise like at Water Grill and telling the difference between various consonant sounds. Mild hearing loss is often treated with hearing aids.
Moderate Hearing Loss
If you have moderate hearing loss, you have trouble hearing sounds around 41 to 55 dB, which means you have trouble distinguishing both consonant and vowel sounds. Many people with this degree of hearing loss report that they can hear but do not understand what is said. Hearing aids can help.
Moderately Severe Hearing Loss
Moderately severe hearing loss refers to difficulty hearing sounds between 56 and 70 dB. Without hearing aids, normal speech is likely inaudible.
Severe Hearing Loss
If you have severe hearing loss, you cannot hear sounds between 71 and 90 dB. While hearing aids might help you hear speech, cochlear implants may be a more effective option.
Profound Hearing Loss
Those with profound hearing loss cannot hear sounds as loud as 91 dB. Communication may be possible with cochlear implants, though many people with this level of hearing loss may prefer to communicate with sign language.
To find out exactly how severe your hearing loss is, schedule an appointment for a hearing test at The House Institute Hearing Health Centers by calling today.