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Understanding Your Degree of Hearing Loss

There are many steps to improving your hearing health. The first one is determining the severity, or degree, of your hearing loss. This is measured by discovering your hearing threshold, the lowest volume, in decibels (dB) at which you can hear sounds. Your results are placed on an audiogram and may vary by pitch (frequency) and by ear. Our audiologists obtain this information through testing called basic comprehensive audiometry, just one of the testing methods we use to find the right solution for you.

Degrees of hearing loss are broken down into the following categories:

  • Mild hearing loss –Hearing threshold between 25-40dB-examples are whispers or conversations in noisy environments.
  • Moderate hearing loss –Hearing threshold between 41-55dB- examples are the wind blowing in the trees or an idling car.
  • Moderately severe hearing loss –Hearing threshold between 56-60dB- examples are an electric shaver or an air conditioner.
  • Severe hearing loss –Hearing threshold between 71-90dB- examples are the lawnmower or a stereo at normal levels.
  • Profound hearing loss–Hearing threshold of 91dB and above- examples are a car horn, a motorcycle at full throttle, and a jet engine.

After we determine the severity of your hearing loss, we can then find out which treatment options are best for you and your situation. Hearing aids are often prescribed, based in part, on your degree of hearing loss.

At Hearing Associates, with locations in Mason City and throughout northern Iowa, we’re here to help you hear! Schedule an appointment today.