HEARING TIPS

Why Can I Hear Soft Sounds But Not my Granddaughter’s Voice?

Woman talking with her granddaughter at a pier now that she is not suffering from high-frequency hearing loss.

Hearing loss is about pitch as much as volume. If it’s hard to comprehend the speech of a child or a woman, but you can still, for the most part, understand the men in the room, you might have some amount of high-frequency hearing loss. This is a very common type of hearing loss so you’re not alone.

Warning Signs of High-Frequency Hearing Loss

With high-frequency hearing loss, you could still be able to register the volume of a woman’s voice or a child’s voice, but consonant sounds that make conversations easy to understand, get muddled. Usually, consonant sounds such as t, th, ch, soft c, s, sh, f, k, and h are the most difficult to differentiate. So, it may sound like a woman or child is mumbling, even though they aren’t. Comprehending a child’s joke or a family member’s question about dinner plans becomes very difficult because you have lost the ability to differentiate these sounds. Separation from family and friends, sadness, and frustration can be the result.

People who have high-frequency hearing loss also miss other sounds that are within the high-frequency range (2000 Hz and higher). This includes high musical notes, birds chirping, and squeaks or sirens. Low-frequency sounds such as bass musical notes, the rumble of thunder or a man’s voice might still be quite easy to detect, even if the volume isn’t that loud.

Reasons For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

As the most common type of hearing loss, high-frequency hearing loss can creep up on people as they get older, usually imperceptibly at first. In addition to aging, too much noise exposure, certain medications and a variety of medical problems including cardiovascular disease can cause high-frequency hearing loss.

The tiny hair-like sensors inside the cochlea are harmed by all of these situations. It’s these little cells that pick up sound input and send it to the brain for processing. The higher pitched sounds are typically the first to become difficult to understand because the high-frequency cells get damaged more easily than the lower pitched cells.

high-frequency Hearing Loss, How to Prevent it

You can take several steps to slow down or stop the progression of high-frequency hearing loss even though you can’t stop your ears from aging. Including these:

  • If you use any medication, ask your doctor if it has any effect on hearing. At least 200 different kinds of medications will cause or worsen high-frequency hearing loss. Even aspirin at high doses can damage your hearing. Check with your doctor to see if there are choices less likely to harm your hearing. If you can’t avoid using a particular medication, keep in close communication with your hearing care professional for regular hearing loss and balance testing. Additional hearing loss can be prevented by treatment.
  • Quieter things are better. Look for noise ratings on appliances and choose the quietest products. If it’s hard to hear your friends at dinner, don’t be scared to ask the manager to turn down the music.
  • Caring for your overall health. Your hearing can be damaged by smoking. Poor health, poor nutrition, or lack of exercise can also injure your hearing. Maintain your hearing by taking care of your overall health.
  • When extracting earwax, never use a swab or any other small object. Your capacity to hear is blunted when you push old earwax against your eardrum. A hot shower is normally enough o get rid of exes earwax but if this doesn’t work ask your hearing professional for other methods of irrigating your ears.
  • medication hearing protection in noisy situations. If you need to shout to be heard in a loud setting, this is a sure sign the noise could injure your hearing. Heavy traffic, motorcycles revving, power tools running, the loud stereo systems at movie theaters or live music concerts are all good examples of occasions when putting in the ear-protection is a smart idea. Noise-canceling headphones are also a good solution in some circumstances, but may not fit in your pocket as easily as ear-plugs.

high-frequency Hearing Loss Treatment

Presently, the most effective method for managing high-frequency hearing loss is hearing aids. And there are many models to pick from since this is the most widespread kind of hearing loss. So that they are crisper to the user, hearing aids can increase high pitched sounds. Several models can be configured and your hearing professional can help fine-tune them to improve your ability to hear those sounds at the right level, directly addressing the level and degree of the hearing loss. For situations such as talking on the phone, listening to children, having dinner at a restaurant, or business meetings many hearing aids can be manipulated by your phone and have directional microphones for fine-tuning.

Schedule a hearing test if you think you may have high-frequency hearing loss. Odds are, there are individually-customized solutions that can increase your capacity to hear your grandchild’s precious one-liners.

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