Q. Will my mild hearing loss reverse by itself?

Answered by
Dr. Anuja Rajendra Sonawane
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 31, 2018

Hi doctor,

I recently had a hearing test which indicated mild hearing loss at the 4k Hz level. The audiologist said not to worry about it at all, protect my ears and it will very unlikely worsen. He even mentioned that it may reverse itself. I am only 32 years old, so I understand any recording above the 20DB mark is not ideal. The values are for 250, 500, 1k, 2k, 4k and 8k Hz levels. Left is 10, 5, 15, 20, 25, 20 (air conduction), left is n/a, 10, 10, 20, 25, n/a (bone conduction). Right is 15, 10, 15, 15, 30, 15 (air conduction).

So my direct questions are would you agree that this is a mild case of hearing loss and there should not be anything to worry about at this stage provided I look after my hearing and ensure I am not exposed to loud sounds too often? Is it likely that this will not worsen (excluding any age-related hearing loss as I get older)? Are my audiologist's comments that it may even reverse itself accurate? How severe is this level of hearing loss and what implications will it mean?



Welcome to

According to the reports indicated (attachment removed to protect patient identity), there is a dip at 4k which indicated a noise-induced hearing loss. Many people suggest that it is not a thing to be worried about, however, we cannot neglect it completely. There are various kinds of hearing loss having various reasons. In this kind of audiogram, it is clear that you have exposed yourself to loud sounds. Now as you have clarified you use headphones for 1 or 2 hours. Let me inform a headphone noise can have a different effect on different people. Some people are more susceptible to hearing loss. Check your work environment if it is noisy you may suffer from hearing loss too. It is not much likely to increase if you are careful. Your audiologist comments are not entirely accurate. The 4k dip is likely to reverse when the 4k area in the organ of corti get enough of blood supply to reverse the damage. The loss is not that severe which will affect your quality of life. But we need to be careful.

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