When it comes to hearing loss, there are many different types that you might experience. High-frequency hearing loss is arguably the most common type out there, so it helps to know as much about it as possible. Throughout this short guide, we’ll explain exactly what it is, along with the symptoms and treatments available.
What Is High-Frequency Hearing Loss?
High-frequency hearing loss is a specific condition that makes it harder for you to hear high-pitched sounds. Other sounds are relatively easy for you to hear and make sense of, but you struggle when high pitches are involved.
This type of hearing loss can affect people of all ages, but it is most common in older adults. Specifically, it is seen as a symptom of age-related hearing loss. Additionally, this type of hearing loss is also associated with individuals that are exposed to loud noises all the time.
What Are The Symptoms Of High-Frequency Hearing Loss?
The best way to know if you have high-frequency hearing loss is by booking an appointment with an audiologist. However, there are also some symptoms you should look for that could indicate you are experiencing this issue:
- You have difficulty hearing people that speak with high voices: Which can mean it is much harder for you to have conversations with women or young children. They speak at a higher pitch than normal, so it’s difficult to make out some of what they’re saying.
- You no longer hear common high-pitched sounds: Are you used to hearing the birds chirping in the morning? Are there other high-pitched sounds in your life that you’ve stopped hearing? If you notice that certain sounds are suddenly absent, it could be down too high-frequency hearing loss.
- You struggle to hear words starting or ending with certain consonants: It’s found that s, f, th or t are usually spoken softer and higher in pitch than other consonants. Consequently, if you struggle to hear words spoken with these consonants in them, it could also be a sign of this type of hearing loss.
- You have tinnitus: Tinnitus is a persistent ringing or buzzing sound in your ears. It is often a symptom of high-frequency hearing loss, particularly if this hearing loss has been caused by exposure to loud noises. Temporary tinnitus can occur after going to concerts or listening to loud sounds, but it should fade within a few days if you don’t have hearing loss.
How Is High-Frequency Hearing Loss Treated?
Unfortunately, high-frequency hearing loss cannot be cured. However, you will be pleased to know there are treatment options available! Specifically, hearing aids are the best course of action. They can be custom-made and programmed with features that tackle this particular type of hearing loss. As a result, you are able to hear higher pitches and live life to the fullest once more.
Naturally, many types of hearing aids exist, but your audiologist is likely to suggest getting an in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aid. ITE which is best equipped to tackle high-frequency hearing loss. The receiver sits in the ear canal, and the way it is designed means there’s less likelihood of muffling low-frequency sounds. So, you get the amplification of the high-frequency sounds you can’t hear naturally, without dampening the low-frequency sounds you can hear.
How Can You Get High-Frequency Hearing Loss Treatment?
It starts with a diagnosis. Therefore, you need to contact an audiologist and get yourself booked in for a consultation. During this consultation, your symptoms will be discussed and a hearing test will be carried out. This will enable your audiologist to see the extent of your hearing loss – while also discovering if it is high-frequency or not.
You will be in a special booth during the test, and your audiologist will start playing sounds that gradually increase in pitch. Your job will be to indicate if you can hear a sound or not. It’s a very easy way of seeing when your hearing starts to struggle, and if you have high-frequency hearing loss or not.
From here, your results will be displayed on an audiogram and discussed with you. If you do have high-frequency hearing loss, your audiologist will discuss the hearing aid treatment options available. After this, you can be booked in for a hearing aid fitting to start the process of getting your device.