If you have a hearing issue, it could be a problem with your ear’s ability to conduct sound or your brain’s ability to process impulses or both depending on your specific symptoms.
Your ability to process sound is influenced by several variables such as general health, age, brain function, and genetics. If you have the aggravating experience being able to hear a person’s voice but not being able to process or understand what that person is saying you might be experiencing one or more of the following kinds of loss of hearing.
Conductive Hearing Loss
You could be suffering from conductive hearing loss if you have to repeatedly swallow and tug on your ears while saying with increasing annoyance “There’s something in my ear”. The ear’s ability to conduct sound to the brain is diminished by problems to the outer and middle ear like wax buildup, ear infections, eardrum damage, and buildup of fluid. Depending on the seriousness of issues going on in your ear, you might be able to make out some people, with louder voices, versus catching partial words from others talking in normal or lower tones.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
In contrast to conductive hearing loss, which impacts the middle and outer ear, Sensorineural hearing loss affects the inner ear. Sounds to the brain can be stopped if the auditory nerve or the hair like nerves are damaged. Sounds can seem too loud or soft and voices can sound too muddy. You’re suffering with high frequency hearing loss, if you have difficulty hearing women and children’s voices or cannot distinguish voices from the background noise.