If you have a hearing problem, it might be a problem with your ear’s ability to conduct sound or your brain’s ability to process impulses or both depending on your exact symptoms.
Age, general wellness, brain function, and the genetic makeup of your ear all play a role in your ability to process sound. If you have the annoying experience of hearing a person’s voice but not being able to process or understand what that person is saying you may be dealing with one or more of the following types of loss of hearing.
Conductive Hearing Loss
When we yank on our ears, repeatedly swallow, and say over and over to ourselves with increasing annoyance, “something’s in my ear,” we might be experiencing conductive hearing loss. The ear’s ability to conduct sound to the brain is lessened by issues to the middle and outer ear like wax buildup, ear infections, eardrum damage, and buildup of fluid. You might still be capable of hearing some people with louder voices while only partly hearing people with lower voices depending on the severity of your hearing loss.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
In contrast to conductive hearing loss, which affects the middle and outer ear, Sensorineural hearing loss impacts the inner ear. Injury to the inner ear’s hair-like cells or the auditory nerve as well can block sound signals from going to the brain. Sounds can seem too loud or soft and voices can come across too muddy. If you cannot distinguish voices from background noise or have difficulty hearing women and children’s voices particularly, then you may be experiencing high-frequency hearing loss.