Why Can’t I Hear my Granddaughter’s Voice But I Can Hear Soft Sounds?

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 about pitch. If it’s hard to comprehend the speech of a child or a woman, but you can still, mostly understand the men in the room, you may have some amount of high-frequency hearing loss. You’re not alone…this is the most prevalent form of hearing loss.

high-frequency Hearing Loss Warning Signs

With high-frequency hearing loss, you could still be able to pick up the volume of a woman’s voice or a child’s voice, but consonant sounds that allow conversations to be easily understood, get muddled. Usually the most difficult to pick up are consonant sounds such as ch, th, t, soft s, c, sh, k, f, and h. So, it might sound like a woman or child is mumbling, even though they actually 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. Isolation from family and friends, sadness, and frustration can be the result.

People who have high-frequency hearing loss also miss other sounds that are within the high-frequency range (2000 Hz and higher). This includes high musical notes, birds chirping, and squeaks or sirens. Even at low volumes a man’s voice, thunder, and bass musical notes, might be relatively easy to detect.

Reasons For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Frequently imperceptible in the beginning, high-frequency hearing loss, the most widespread kind of hearing loss, can sneak up on you as you age. high-frequency hearing loss can be induced by other things besides aging such as certain medical disorders like cardiovascular disease, too much noise exposure, and several medications.

The tiny hair-like sensors within the cochlea are harmed by all of these situations. Sound input is picked up by these tiny cells and delivered to the brain for processing. The high-frequency sensory cells are more sensitive to damage than the low-frequency sensory cells, which is why the higher-pitched sounds are frequently the first to be difficult to comprehend.

high-frequency Hearing Loss, How to Avoid it

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

  • If you use any medication, ask your doctor if it has any impact on hearing. At least 200 different varieties of medications will cause or worsen high-frequency hearing loss. Even too much aspirin can harm your hearing. To learn if there are choices less likely to injure your hearing, check with your doctor. If you can’t avoid taking a particular medication, keep in close communication with your hearing specialist for regular hearing loss and balance testing. Dealing with hearing loss early can help prevent further loss.
  • Your health is important so take care of it. Smoking can damage your hearing. Your hearing can also be injured from poor health caused by poor nutrition. Protect your hearing by taking care of your overall health.
  • In noisy conditions, use hearing protection. If you need to shout to be heard in a noisy setting, this is a certain signal the noise could damage your hearing. Heavy traffic, engines revving, power tool sounds, the loud stereo systems at movies or rock concerts are all good examples of occasions when popping in the ear-plugs is a good idea. Noise canceling headphone may not fit in your pocket, but they are the best solution in certain scenarios.
  • Quieter things are better. Look for noise ratings on appliances and choose the quietest versions. And don’t be scared to ask the restaurant manager to turn down the music if it’s difficult to hear your dinner companions.
  • Never using a swab (or other small objects) to get rid of ear wax. This can push old ear wax into your ear canal and blunt your capacity to hear. A hot shower is usually enough o get rid of exes earwax but if this doesn’t work ask your hearing care professional for other ways to irrigate your ears.

Treatment For High-Frequency Hearing Loss

Presently, the most effective strategy for treating high-frequency hearing loss is hearing aids. And since this is the most common type of hearing loss, there are many different designs a person can pick from. So that they are crisper to the user, hearing aids can augment high pitched sounds. You can directly address your level and degree of hearing loss by having your hearing care expert fine-tune your hearing aid to enhance your ability to hear sounds at the right level. Some hearing aids can be controlled by your phone and include directional microphones for fine-tuning in circumstances like business meetings, restaurant dinners, talking on the phone or listening to children.

If you think that you may be dealing with high-frequency hearing loss, schedule a hearing exam. Chances are, there are personally-customized answers that can enhance your capacity to catch your grandchild’s precious one-liners.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.