HEARING TIPS

Why Can I Hear Quiet 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 not just about volume, it’s about pitch. It’s likely you have some amount of high-frequency hearing loss if you can understand what the men in the room are saying but you can’t hear women and children. This is a very prevalent form of hearing loss so you’re not alone.

Warning Signs of High-Frequency Hearing Loss

With high-frequency hearing loss, you may still be able to register the volume of a woman’s voice or a child’s voice, but consonant sounds that allow conversations to be easily understood, get muddled. Usually the most difficult to pick up are consonant sounds such as ch, th, t, soft s, c, sh, k, f, and h. So, it might sound like a woman or child is mumbling, even though they aren’t. Comprehending a child’s joke or your loved ones question about dinner plans becomes very difficult because you have lost the ability to distinguish these sounds. This can lead to frustration, despair and social isolation from your circle of friends and family.

People who have high-frequency hearing loss also don’t hear other sounds falling within the high-frequency range (2000 Hz and higher). This includes high musical notes, birds chirping, and squeaks or whistles. Even at low volumes a man’s voice, thunder, and bass musical notes, might be fairly easy to discern.

Causes of High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Frequently imperceptible at first, high-frequency hearing loss, the most widespread kind of hearing loss, can creep up on you as you age. In addition to growing older, excessive noise exposure, some medications and a variety of medical problems including cardiovascular disease can cause high-frequency hearing loss.

The little hair-like sensors within the cochlea are injured by all of these scenarios. It’s these tiny cells that receive sound input and send it to the brain for processing. The higher pitched sounds are typically the first to be tough to understand because the high-frequency cells become injured more easily than the lower pitched cells.

How to Prevent High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Although you can’t stop your ears from growing older, there are quite a few steps you can take to stop or at least slow the advancement of high-frequency hearing loss. Including these:

  • Your health is important so take good care of it. Smoking can harm your hearing. Your hearing can also be injured by poor health due to poor nutrition. Try to take good care of your health in all ways and this will protect your hearing also.
  • Never using a swab (or other small objects) to take out ear wax. This can push old ear wax into your ear canal and blunt your capacity to hear. Gently wash out excess earwax with a rag when you’re done showering, or ask your hearing professional about other ear irrigation techniques for getting rid of earwax without injuring your hearing.
  • In loud surroundings, put in hearing protection.A sure indication that your ears might be getting injured is if you have to yell to be heard in a noisy setting. Heavy traffic, engines revving, power tools running, the loud stereo systems at movie theaters or rock concerts are all good examples of instances when putting in the ear-plugs is a good idea. Noise canceling earphone may not fit inside your pocket, but they can be the best solution in some situations.
  • Quieter things are more ideal. Find noise ratings on appliances and select the quietest models. If it’s tough to hear your friends at dinner, don’t be hesitant to ask the manager to turn the music down.
  • Ask your doctor about medications you use. At least 200 different kinds of medications can cause or worsen high-frequency hearing loss. Even aspirin at high doses can damage your hearing. To discover if there are options less likely to injure your hearing, consult your doctor. If you can’t avoid taking a specific medication, keep in close communication with your hearing specialist for regular hearing loss and balance testing. Treating hearing loss early can help avoid further loss.

Treatment For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Hearing aids are presently the most efficient strategy for treating high-frequency hearing loss. And there are many designs to choose from because this is the most widespread kind of hearing loss. So that they are clearer to the listener, hearing aids can boost high pitched sounds. Many models can be configured and your hearing professional can help fine-tune them to enhance your ability to hear those sounds at the right level, directly addressing the level and degree of the hearing loss. For circumstances 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 suspect you might have high-frequency hearing loss. If you would like to increase your capacity to hear your grandchild’s priceless one-liner, odds are there are personally designed answers for you.

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