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There are three types of hearing loss, each with its own causes, symptoms and treatment options. Healthy Hearing’s article Types of Hearing Loss and Starkey Hearing’s post on the types, causes and treatment of hearing loss discuss the qualities of each.

Sensorineural and Conductive Hearing Loss

  Sensorineural Conductive
Status Most common (more than 90%) Permanent Less common


May be permanent or temporary

Healthy Hearing Definition; Types “Occurs when there is damage to either the tiny hair-like cells of the inner ear or the auditory nerve itself, which prevents or weakens the transfer of nerve signals to the brain.”
Two types: Congenital (happens during pregnancy) and
Acquired (occurs after birth)
“Occurs when there is an obstruction or damage to the outer or middle ear that prevents sound from being conducted to the inner ear.”


– Causes differ, depending on whether the outer or middle ear is affected.

Causes – Genetic syndrome


– Infection passed from mother to fetus in the womb (toxoplasmosis, rubella, herpes)

– Aging

– Diseases and viral infections

– Traumatic injuries

– Exposure to loud noises

– Medications

– Tumors, growths and malformations of the inner ear

– Meniere’s Disease

– Fluid in the middle ear


– Ear infections

– Allergies

– Perforated eardrum

– Ear wax impaction

– Swimmer’s ear

– Obstructions caused by foreign bodies

– Blockages in the Eustachian tube

– Tumors, growths and malformations of the outer ear, ear canal or middle ear

– Traumatic injury

Symptoms Loudness AND clarity of sounds is affected Loudness of sounds is affected
Treatment Hearing aids, cochlear implants Medication, surgery, hearing aids


Mixed Hearing Loss

The third type of hearing loss is mixed- a combination of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss. Therefore, the causes, symptoms and treatment for mixed hearing loss is a combination of those true of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss, and depend on your unique condition.

For more information about the causes, symptoms and treatment of each kind of hearing loss, visit

If you’ve been struggling with your hearing, make an appointment with one of our audiologists today. We can determine which type of hearing loss you suffer from, and then find the best treatment option for you.


Call Us: (479) 785-3277