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 not simply about volume, it’s about pitch. It’s conceivable you have some level of high-frequency hearing loss if you can understand what the men in the room are saying but you can’t hear children and women. This is a very prevalent type of hearing loss so you’re not alone.

high-frequency Hearing Loss Warning Signs

With high-frequency hearing loss, consonant sounds that allow conversations to be understood, get muddled even though you might still be able to register the volume of a woman or a child’s voice. Usually, consonant sounds such as t, th, ch, soft c, s, sh, f, k, and h are the hardest to differentiate. Even though a woman or a child is not mumbling, it might sound like they are. Losing the ability to differentiate these sounds makes it very difficult to understand a child’s joke or your sister’s question about dinner plans. Separation from family and friends, sadness, and frustration can be the result.

Other sounds within the high-frequency hearing loss range (2000 Hz) are lost to people with this condition. This includes birds chirping, high musical notes, sirens or squeaks. Even at low volumes a man’s voice, thunder, and bass musical notes, may be relatively easy to discern.

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, often imperceptibly in the beginning. Other than aging, excessive noise exposure, particular medications and a variety of medical issues like cardiovascular disease can result in high-frequency hearing loss.

These situations all do damage to the tiny, hair-like sensory cells within the cochlea. It’s these little cells that pick up sound input and send it to the brain for processing. The high-frequency sensory cells are more prone to damage than the low-frequency sensory cells, and this is why the higher-pitched sounds are often the first to become difficult to understand.

high-frequency Hearing Loss, How to Avoid it

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 progress of high-frequency hearing loss. Including these:

  • Seeking out quiet things. Find the quietest product by checking the noise rating of the appliances. If it’s difficult to hear your dinner companions, don’t be afraid to ask the manager to turn the music down.
  • If you use any medication, ask your doctor if it has any impact on hearing. high-frequency hearing loss can be caused by at least 200 different kinds of medications. Your hearing can even be injured by too much aspirin. To learn if there are options less likely to injure your hearing, consult your doctor. If you can’t avoid taking a particular medication, keep in close contact with your hearing care professional for regular hearing loss and balance testing. Getting treatment for hearing loss early can help prevent further loss.
  • Never utilizing a swab (or other small objects) to get rid of ear wax. Your capacity to hear is blunted when you jam old earwax against your eardrum. Carefully wash out excessive earwax with a washcloth when you’re done showering, or ask your hearing professional about other ear irrigation techniques for getting rid of earwax without hurting your hearing.
  • Taking good care of your overall health. Your hearing can be damaged by smoking. Your hearing can also be damaged by poor health due to poor nutrition. Try to take good care of your health in all aspects and this can safeguard your hearing also.
  • In noisy spaces, put in hearing protection.A certain indication that your ears could be getting damaged is if you need to shout to be heard in a loud setting. Heavy traffic, engines revving, power tools running, the loud sound systems at movie theaters or rock concerts are all good examples of times when putting in the ear-protection is a good idea. Noise-canceling headphones are also a good alternative in certain scenarios, but may not fit in your pocket as easily as ear-plugs.

high-frequency Hearing Loss Treatment

Hearing aids are currently the most effective method for dealing with high-frequency hearing loss. And because this is the most widespread type of hearing loss, there are many different designs a person can pick from. So that they are clearer to the listener, hearing aids can boost 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, immediately 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.

If you suspect that you may have high-frequency hearing loss, schedule a hearing test. If you want to increase your capacity to hear your grandchild’s priceless one-liner, odds are there are personally tailored solutions for you.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Schedule an appointment to see if hearing aids could benefit you.