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 isn’t simply about volume, it’s also about pitch. If it’s hard to understand the speech of a child or a woman, but you can still, for the most part, understand the men in the room, you may have some degree of high-frequency hearing loss. You’re not alone..this is the most common form of hearing loss.

high-frequency Hearing Loss Warning Signs

With high-frequency hearing loss, you might 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. Normally the most difficult to pick up are consonant sounds like ch, th, t, soft s, c, sh, k, f, and h. So, it may sound like a woman or child is mumbling, even though they aren’t. Losing the ability to distinguish these sounds makes it very difficult to understand a child’s joke or your sister’s question about dinner plans. This can lead to frustration, despair and social isolation from your circle of friends and family.

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

Reasons For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Often imperceptible at first, high-frequency hearing loss, the most widespread kind of hearing loss, can creep up on you as you get older. In addition to aging, excessive noise exposure, some medications and numerous medical issues like cardiovascular disease can lead to high-frequency hearing loss.

These situations all cause damage to the tiny, hair-like sensory cells inside the cochlea. Sound input is received by these tiny cells and sent to the brain for processing. The high-frequency sensory cells are more vulnerable to damage than the low-frequency sensory cells, and this is why the higher-pitched sounds are often the first to be difficult to comprehend.

How to Prevent High-Frequency Hearing Loss

While you can’t stop your ears from getting older, there are several things you can do to prevent or at least slow the progress of high-frequency hearing loss. Some of these include:

  • Never using a swab (or other small objects) to take out ear wax. This can jam old ear wax into your ear canal and dull your capacity to hear. A hot shower is normally enough o get rid of exes earwax but if this doesn’t work ask your hearing professional for other ways to irrigate your ears.
  • Ask your doctor about medications you use. high-frequency hearing loss can be caused by at least 200 different kinds of medications. Your hearing can even be damaged by high doses of aspirin. consult your doctor to find out if there are possibilities less likely to injure your hearing. If you can’t avoid using a particular medication, stay in close contact with your hearing specialist for regular hearing loss and balance testing. Treating hearing loss early can help avoid further loss.
  • Quieter things are more ideal. Pick the quietest model by checking the noise rating of the appliances. If it’s difficult to hear your friends at dinner, don’t be hesitant to ask the manager to turn the music down.
  • In loud situations, put in hearing protection.A sure indication that your ears might be getting damaged is if you need to shout to be heard in a noisy setting. Heavy traffic, motorcycles revving, power tools running, the loud stereo systems at movies or live music concerts are all good examples of occasions when putting in the ear-plugs is a good idea. Noise-canceling earphones are also a good solution in certain scenarios, but might not fit inside your pocket as easily as ear-plugs.
  • Your health is important so take care of it. Smoking can injury your hearing. Your hearing can also be harmed by poor health caused by poor nutrition. Try to take good care of your health in all ways and this will protect your hearing also.

Treatment For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

At this time, the most effective technique for managing high-frequency hearing loss is hearing aids. And there are many models to choose from because this is the most widespread kind of hearing loss. So that they are crisper to the user, hearing aids can boost high pitched sounds. You can directly address your level and degree of hearing loss by having your hearing care professional fine-tune your hearing aid to enhance your ability to hear sounds at the correct level. For circumstances like talking on the phone, listening to children, having dinner at a restaurant, or business meetings many hearing aids can be controlled by your phone and have directional microphones for fine-tuning.

If you think that you may have high-frequency hearing loss, make an appointment for a hearing test. If you would like to improve your ability to hear your grandchild’s priceless one-liner, odds are there are individually tailored solutions for you.

The content of this blog is the intellectual property of MedPB.com and is reprinted here with permission.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive a personalized free hearing test and hearing loss consultation, call today to set up an appointment.