If you can hear voices and understand some words but not others, or you can’t distinguish between someone’s voice and nearby noise, your hearing problem may be in your ear’s ability to conduct sound or in your brain’s ability to process signals, or both.
Your ability to process sound is influenced by a number of variables such as overall health, age, brain function, and genetics. You might be dealing with one of the following kinds of hearing loss if you have the annoying experience of hearing people talk but not being able to understand what they are saying.
Conductive Hearing Loss
You could be experiencing conductive hearing loss if you have to continuously swallow and tug on your ears while saying with increasing annoyance “There’s something in my ear”. The ear’s ability to conduct sound to the brain is diminished by problems to the middle and outer ear such as wax buildup, ear infections, eardrum damage, and buildup of fluid. Depending on the seriousness of problems going on in your ear, you might be able to understand some individuals, with louder voices, versus catching partial words from others talking in normal or lower tones.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
In contrast to conductive hearing loss, which affects the middle and outer ear, Sensorineural hearing loss impacts the inner ear. Damage to the inner ear’s hair-like cells or the auditory nerve as well can stop sound signals to the brain. Voices might sound slurred or muddy to you, and sounds can sound as either too high or too low. You’re suffering with high frequency hearing loss, if you have a hard time hearing women and children’s voices or can’t distinguish voices from the background noise.