Learning More About Hearing Loss
To understand hearing health and hearing loss, you should first understand how your ear works to capture sound and transmit it to your brain. The outer ear is designed to capture sounds and funnel them into the ear canal. The sounds enter your ear canal, where they cause vibrations in your eardrum. The eardrum has the job of transferring the sound waves from your outer ear to your inner ear.
As the sound passes through the inner ear, it vibrates tiny hair cells that represent individual frequencies or pitches. If you think about the inner ear as a piano, some hairs represent the highest notes on the piano, and some represent the lowest. As the various hairs vibrate, it triggers transmission of those frequencies to your brain for interpretation of what sound you have heard.
Your ability to hear clearly can be impacted by certain medical conditions, genetics, accidents, prolonged exposure to loud noises, or even aging.