Have you noticed that your children mumble? Do you struggle to understand people on the phone? Can you hear your best mates fine, but sometimes don’t understand what your partner is saying? Don’t worry, as hearing care specialists we constantly encounter patients who can hear some people, but not others. In today’s post, we’ll address how that’s possible and what it has to do with hearing loss.
Hearing loss affects people in different ways, due to the nature and type of hearing loss. The most common forms of hearing loss are noise-induced, caused by excessive and prolonged noise exposure, and age-related presbycusis, resulting from the effects of ageing.
Both types of hearing loss, noise-induced and age-related, can affect high frequencies. In this case, low-pitched sounds are easy to hear, but high-pitched sounds (above 1000 Hz) have to be amplified before some with high-frequency hearing loss can hear them.
Click here to learn more about sound frequency and how it works!
As a result, women and children’s voices are often more difficult to understand, as they tend to be high frequency in tone, especially in noisy environments. Hence, people with hearing loss feel that they mumble. This, in turn, causes frustration for both the hearing impaired and the person they are attempting to communicate with.
If this sounds familiar to you, you might also experience the following:
Another issue, apart from trying our best to include people with hearing loss in conversations, is our positioning when we speak. Today, there is often little consideration of acoustics and noise interference in the design of homes and public spaces. Noise reduction is a thing of the past, homes now are open plan as are restaurants and other venues. Ambient noise in these environments masks speech and makes conversation difficult – with or without a hearing loss.
There are some simple steps you can take to improve your communication with the people in your life: Face people when you talk, make sure you can see their face and they can see yours. Don’t talk from another room. Remember the easy rule: Just because you can hear me doesn’t mean that I can hear you.
If you have been diagnosed with hearing loss or suspect you may have a hearing loss, see your local Hearing care provider. There are many options available to help you hear better, address your hearing problems and communication issues.
Hearing aids and modern hearing technology adapt to your needs. Hearing aids can amplify high-pitched sounds, without amplifying low-pitched sounds. These assistive devices help people with hearing loss lead normal lives, communicate better with less fatigue and stress.
However, assistive listening devices don’t work for everyone. If the underlying issue is an auditory processing disorder (APD), the nervous system doesn’t make sense of the input coming from the ears. Both adults and children can be affected by this disorder. It is yet another important reason to see your local hearing specialist and book a comprehensive hearing assessment.
It is never too late to start your journey to better hearing health and protect your hearing. If you have trouble hearing, give your local hearing specialist a call and ask them any hearing-related questions you may have. Or book a comprehensive hearing assessment online to get to the bottom of your worries and find appropriate management options.
Attune Hearing clinics offer a range of medical services. With over 50 audiology cinics Australia-wide, we put the health and well-being of our patients first, always. Find your local Attune clinic today and book a diagnostic hearing test.