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Advocacy

Hearing health is complex and touches all aspects of a person’s life. Listen Carefully seeks to help others live fuller, healthier lives by focusing on four key priorities:

But first, it’s important to have a strong understanding of what exactly hearing loss is.

Hearing Loss is the reduction in our ability to hear certain sounds. Specifically, hearing loss refers to when a person’s hearing threshold is 25 decibels (dB) or lower in both ears. Because it is gradual, it is important to be aware of hearing loss signs.

What are the signs?

Frequently asking others to repeat themselves

Turning the TV to a volume others find loud

Having trouble understanding conversations in noisy places

Having difficulty hearing women and children’s voices

Feeling like others are mumbling

Having trouble hearing on the phone

Avoiding social situations that were once enjoyable

Having ringing in your ears

Others saying that you have hearing loss

There are three common types of hearing loss:

Sensorineural hearing loss is the most common type of hearing loss and is usually permanent. This form of hearing loss comes from damage to the inner ear’s nerves and hair cells. Common causes that result in this type of hearing loss are aging and prolonged noise damage, including the use of headphones.

Conductive hearing loss often results from fluid or earwax buildup, or an ear infection, and is often temporary. This type of hearing loss is caused by an obstruction in the outer or middle ear, but it can be treated with medicine or surgery

Mixed hearing loss is a mix of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss.

Hearing loss varies from person to person, and only a licensed hearing professional can diagnose it.

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What to do if you suspect you have a hearing problem:

Make an appointment with a hearing professional like an audiologist, hearing aid specialist or ENT for an evaluation, consultation and hearing test. Many hearing care professionals offer this evaluation at no charge.