High Frequency Hearing Loss
High frequency hearing loss is one of several different types of hearing loss. It also means that different treatments and solutions are available to choose from. This is why it is important for people suffering from hearing loss to be properly tested. Knowing the exact style of hearing loss that a person is suffering from will provide medical staff with the information they need to make a proper diagnosis. This will help them to offer the best possible support and treatment for people suffering from hearing loss.
The most common forms of hearing loss affects the high frequencies. People who suffer from high frequency hearing loss are unable to hear sounds that are in the higher level of frequencies. This will mean that they often struggle to understand speech because they miss the consonant letters’ such as F, H and S. It is also important to note that different people, and even different professionals, will have a different take on what is classed as a high frequency. Low and high frequencies are measures on an audiogram and there will be will be some professionals that will class a level of 2,000 Hz (2kHz) as being a high frequency. The stated range for high frequency actually runs from 2,000 Hz all the way through to 8,000 Hz. When you take on board that many people consider 1,000 Hz to be the mid-level of frequencies, it is easy to see that there is a wide range of sounds that can be classed as being at a high frequency.
Affects The Younger Generation
As stated when a person suffers from a high frequency they can suffer when trying to hear speech and take part in conversations. The consonants that are regarded as being high frequency sounds, letters F, H and S, can all be found in a range that runs from around 1,500 Hz all the way through to 6,000 Hz and are often integral to understanding speech. People that find that their hearing at a higher level is diminishing will find it a lot more difficult to pick up these sounds and therefore hear clearly. This can have a negative impact on children in a classroom trying to learn. This is why it is extremely important for children to have their hearing tested if there is any doubt about their ability to hear. They may not understand or realise that their hearing is not at the level it should be, and this could be keeping them back when it comes to developing their speech and language skills in school.
As you would expect, there is a considerable amount of research in the hearing loss sector, and this means that high frequency hearing loss has been considered by the experts for a considerable period of time. From this, it seems as though there has been a change in the way that people are affected by high frequency hearing loss.
Research comparing modern findings and statistics for sufferers from high frequency hearing loss in the modern era with figures from the 1950s and 60s has shown up a number of interesting issues. It seems that the level of high frequency hearing loss has remained consistent among adults between the two eras but there has been a sharp rise in the number of teenagers who are diagnosed with high frequency hearing loss.
This could be impacted upon by the fact that it is now easier to determine hearing loss so it may be that the same number of sufferers are involved, but it is just easier to diagnose hearing loss in teenagers these days. However, there is also a suggestion that children are being exposed to more hearing products through gadgets, technology and devices, which could be putting more strain on children’s ears at a younger age. This could be a factor in the rise of teenagers who are suffering from high frequency hearing loss.
What Causes High Frequency Hearing Loss?
While noise is a factor in causing high frequency hearing loss, it is not the only factor and cause of this condition. Other factors that should be considered include:
- Exposure to certain drugs
The fact that there is a wide range of causes impacting on your high frequency hearing means that anyone and everyone can be affected by it. This is another reason why it is important to have your hearing tested on a regular basis especially as we grow older.
While the number of ways that high frequency hearing loss can be obtained makes it difficult to prevent, there are steps that people can take to improve the quality of their hearing. This is where the use of hearing protection products, such as ear plugs, will have a positive impact on a person’s hearing in the long term.
When it comes to treating high frequency hearing loss there is often little that can be done medically but a hearing aids can often help. There are two key ways in which a hearing aid can help a sufferer to hear more effectively. The hearing aid will assist by having the emphasis of its amplification on the higher frequencies to allow the patient to hear them. There are a range of other tools within a hearing aid to assist with this type of loss and hearing professionals will be able to provide the best guidance on which type of hearing aid is best for a person’s individual problems and needs.
With hearing aids and cochlear implants providing a solution for people with high frequency hearing loss, there is an opportunity for sufferers to make more from life. There is also an opportunity to utilise lip-reading and sign language skills to improve the likelihood of communicating effectively with other people.