Hearing loss can affect one ear or both and in most circumstances a person will feel as though they have a 'good' or a 'bad' ear. Whilst Single Sided Deafness (SSD) is a very real condition, is it better to just compensate for the one side with significant loss?
Causes of hearing loss in one ear
- Sudden deafness
- Physical damage to the ear
- Pressure on the hearing nerve
- Inner ear problems including infections (viral or bacterial)
- Diseases such as measles, mumps and meningitis
So, do you need one or two hearing aids?
The Monocle Metaphor
Think about your vision. Even if one eye is better than the other, you’ve never considered wearing a monocle to address your eyesight. You wear glasses that correct each eye accordingly, and you know that with only a single eye corrected, your depth perception and eyesight would be worse overall. Similar to wearing glasses, your hearing benefits greatly by wearing a pair of hearing aids instead of just one.
Our brains process sound from both ears at the same time. Whilst one ear suffers more and needs corrective adjustments, research shows that wearing two ears can:
1) Increase hearing balance
2) Improve speech understanding
3) Prevent future damage to the 'good' side
Whilst it is true that buying one hearing aid can target the primary affected ear- not to mention it is half the price- there are common misconceptions about how good your sound can be improved with only one ear treated.
Our expert opinion is that if you believe you have one worse ear, try one device at a time. See how your brain responds to the new sounds being emitted. If you notice any sound balance issues reach out to us we will perform an over the phone diagnosis. In rare cases we recommend seeing an audiologist to have your 'good' ear tested again.