Smokey Mountain Audiology & Hearing Aids Diagnostics Evaluations in Sevierville, TN

Types Of Hearing Loss

Conductive hearing loss occurs when sound is not conducted efficiently through the outer ear canal to the eardrum and the tiny bones (ossicles) of the middle ear. This type of hearing loss can often be corrected medically or surgically.
Some possible causes of conductive hearing loss:
  • Fluid in the middle ear
  • Ear infection (otitis media)
  • Allergies (serous otitis media)
  • Poor eustachian tube function
  • Perforated eardrum
  • Benign tumors
  • Impacted earwax (cerumen)
  • Infection in the ear canal (external otitis)
  • Swimmer's Ear (otitis ecxterna)
  • Presence of a foreign body
  • Absence or malformation of the outer ear, ear canal, or middle ear
Hearing Loss — Smokey Mountain Audiology & Hearing Aids Diagnostics Evaluations in Sevierville, TN

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) occurs when there is damage to the inner ear (cochlea), or to the nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain. Most of the time, SNHL cannot be medically or surgically corrected. This is the most common type of permanent hearing loss.
Hearing Test — Sensorineural Hearing Loss, TN
Some possible causes of SNHL:
  • Illnesses
  • Ototoxic medication; medication that is toxic to hearing
  • Familial or hereditary hearing loss
  • Aging
  • Head trauma
  • Malformation of the inner ear
  • Exposure to loud noise

Mixed Hearing Loss

Sometimes a conductive hearing loss occurs in combination with a sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL). In other words, there may be damage in the outer or middle ear and in the inner ear (cochlea) or auditory nerve. When this occurs, the hearing loss is referred to as a mixed hearing loss.

Degree Of Hearing Loss

The degree in which your loss of hearing can occur refers to how severe the lost can be. The table of information below displays a more common system of classification. The numbers on the chart represent a patient's range of hearing loss in decibels. (DB HL)

Degree of hearing Loss

Moderately Severe

Hearing loss range (dB HL)

–10 to 15
16 to 25
26 to 40
41 to 55
56 to 70
71 to 90