When many people think of hearing loss they think of both ears. However, hearing loss can occur in only one ear. Hearing loss in one ear is known as Unilateral Hearing Loss (UHL) and can affect both children and adults. If untreated, UHL can cause speech delays, academic and career struggles. Those difficulties can often lead to social and emotional issues. According to the National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL), an estimated 7.2% of adults suffer from UHL, but only 2% actually use a hearing aid as a solution.
Hearing aids can be beneficial if you suffer from unilateral hearing loss as they can provide normal hearing to the affected ear. Contralateral Routing of Signals (CROS) and Bi-CROS system hearing aids are recommended for those who have hearing loss in one ear. CROS is a hearing aid that wirelessly transfers sound from the non-hearing ear to the hearing aid on the normal hearing ear. A Bi-CROS system is used when an individual has trouble hearing in one ear but can hear perfectly in the other. Phonak Cros B 312, Oticon Opn miniRite, and Oticon Opn BTE13 Plus Power are some examples of hearing aids used by individuals dealing with UHL.
Unilateral Hearing Loss can be caused by genetic hearing loss, outer middle or inner ear abnormalities, syndromes, illness or infection, head injury, exposure to loud noise or traumatic brain injury. It can be diagnosed in different ways. Audiological evaluations, such as MRI Scan and laboratory testing, imaging, and diagnostic testing will help your audiologist determine if you are indeed suffering from UHL.
For those suffering from Unilateral Hearing Loss it is treatable and can improve with the help of a hearing aid device that perfectly fits you. For more details regarding UHL and finding your perfect hearing aid, please contact New Generation Hearing Centers for a free consultation.