If you have a hearing issue, it may be something wrong in your ear’s ability to conduct sound or your brain’s ability to process signals or both depending on your precise symptoms.
Your ability to process sound is governed by several variables such as general health, age, brain function, and genetics. If you have the annoying experience being able to hear 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 kinds of hearing loss.
Conductive Hearing Loss
You could be experiencing conductive hearing loss if you have to continuously swallow and tug on your ears while saying with growing annoyance “There’s something in my ear”. Issues with the middle and outer ear like fluid in the ear, a buildup of wax, ear infections, or damage to your eardrum all reduce the ear’s ability to conduct sound to the brain. Depending on the seriousness of problems going on in your ear, you could be able to make out some individuals, with louder voices, versus hearing partial words from others talking in normal or lower tones.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Where conductive hearing loss can be triggered by outer- and middle-ear issues, Sensorineural hearing loss affects the inner ear. Damage to the inner ear’s hair-like cells or the auditory nerve as well can stop sound signals from going to the brain. Voices might sound slurred or unclean to you, and sounds can come across as either too high or too low. You’re suffering with high frequency hearing loss, if you have difficulty hearing women and children’s voices or can’t differentiate voices from the background noise.