Hearing loss, also known as hearing impairment or deafness, is a condition that affects a person’s ability to hear sounds at different levels of severity. It can be a result of various factors and can impact one or both ears. Hearing loss can occur gradually over time or suddenly, depending on the cause. There are three main types of hearing loss: Conductive Hearing Loss: This type of hearing loss occurs when there is a problem in the outer or middle ear that prevents sound from reaching the inner ear. It can be caused by earwax buildup, ear infections, fluid in the middle ear, a perforated eardrum, or structural issues in the ear. Sensorineural Hearing Loss: This type of hearing loss results from damage to the hair cells or nerves in the inner ear or along the auditory pathway to the brain. Sensorineural hearing loss can be caused by factors such as aging, exposure to loud noise, certain medications, infections, or underlying medical conditions. Mixed Hearing Loss: This is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss, meaning there are issues in both the outer/middle ear and the inner ear or auditory nerve. Symptoms of hearing loss can vary depending on the type and severity of the condition. Common signs include: Difficulty understanding speech, especially in noisy environments. Asking others to repeat themselves frequently. Turning up the volume on electronic devices excessively. Trouble hearing high-pitched sounds. Social withdrawal due to communication challenges. If you suspect you or someone you know may have hearing loss, it’s essential to seek professional evaluation and diagnosis from an audiologist or a hearing healthcare professional. They can conduct various tests to assess the type and degree of hearing loss and recommend appropriate treatment options.