Image shows audiologist talking on the phone with a man about the degree of hearing loss

Degree of hearing loss

If you suspect that you might have some degree of hearing loss, you are probably wondering how serious it is. This page will educate you about the different levels of hearing loss and how you can seek help, no matter what level of hearing loss you may have.

icon of group of people
Helped over
250,000 Australians
Same day

Compare degrees of hearing loss

The severity of your hearing loss is usually measured in two ways:

  1. Loudness: How loud does a sound need to be in order for you to hear it?
  2. Pitch: Which frequencies are difficult for you to hear?

Below are the commonly used main categories for hearing loss levels with examples of sounds that might be inaudible at a given level (based on their loudness and pitch.)

Level of hearing loss Decibel Symptoms Sounds you may miss
Normal hearing ≤25 dB No perceived hearing loss symptoms No sounds missing
Mild hearing loss 26-40 dB Quiet and soft conversation and situations with background noise are difficult to understand Ticking clock
Moderate hearing loss 41-60 dB When you have a moderate hearing loss, the quietest sounds you can hear with your better ear are between 41 and 60 dB. Higher volume levels are required for radio and televisions. Vacuum cleaner
Severe hearing loss 61-80 dB When you have a severe hearing loss, the quietest sounds you can hear with your better ear are between 61 and 80 dB. Difficulties with speech and group conversations, comprehension is impossible without amplification. Baby crying
Profound hearing loss ≥81 dB When you have a profound hearing loss, the quietest sounds you can hear with your better ear are 81 dB or more. Difficult or impossible to hear and understand amplified devices or speech. Airplanes

3 ways to understand the severity of your hearing loss

icon shows person with headphone
Book a FREE* hearing check
Get a FREE* hearing check at a clinic near you to assess the severity of your hearing loss
Book a hearing check
Icon shows laptop
Take the online hearing test
You can test your hearing with 4 easy questions and a simple listening test^.
Start Online Hearing Test
Icon shows ear with wave
Study the signs of hearing loss
Understanding the common signs of hearing loss can help with early detection.
Signs of hearing loss
Image shows woman in front pf laptop with headphone on

Online Hearing Test

Take our FREE online hearing test. Do you suspect you have hearing loss? Our simple online hearing test will give you an indication of your hearing abilities, using background noise and self-evaluation questions and you will receive your results instantly.
Question 1 of 1
Have you taken an online hearing test before?

Step 1 of 6

Reading an audiogram

An audiogram is a graph or chart that displays the results of your comprehensive hearing evaluation.

The X-axis shows the different pitches of the sounds that were played to you during your test. This axis is laid out like piano keys, where low-pitched sounds are on the left and higher pitches are towards the right of the graph.

The Y-axis shows the loudness which increases as you go down the graph. The points on the graph demonstrate how loud the sounds needed to be in order for you to hear at each pitch.

Circles (red) symbolise your right ear and crosses (blue) symbolise your left ear.

Book a FREE* hearing check

Illustration shows audiogram
Image shows audiologist placing hearing aid into woman's ear

Seek early treatment for hearing loss

Gradual hearing loss is fairly common in the aging process. But this doesn't mean that it should be ignored!

Hearing loss could lead to lowered mental stimulation and isolation. Managing hearing loss helps keep the brain actively engaged in everyday life.

Find a hearing clinic Hearing loss treatment

Treating all degrees of hearing loss

If you think you have hearing loss but you've been putting off getting a hearing aid, you're not alone.

Only 1 in 4 people who could benefit from hearing aids actually use them

While taking the first step can be the hardest part, seeking advice as soon as possible is recommended. eing proactive in seeking help in the early stages of hearing loss is  beneficial for both your current and long-term hearing health outcomes.

5 steps to improving your hearing

Check your hearing
1. Check your hearing with our 5-minute online hearing test (4).
Start now
Hearing Check
2. Book a FREE* hearing check in a clinic near you.
Book appointment
Icon shows a shield with an ear
3. Learn about modern hearing aid technology features and benefits.
Explore hearing aids
icon showing a bag of money
4. Learn about funding options and subsidy programs.
Funding options
60-day money back guarantee^
5. Take advantage of our 60-day money back guarantee^.
Audika advantage

FAQ about hearing loss levels

Mona Hemsley red shirt looking forward
Mona Hemsley - Chief Audiologist and Head of Clinical Governance and Training

B.Comm(Mgt), GradCertSci., M.Clin.Aud.,MAudSA(CCP)

Mona’s career has seen her work in a wide range of audiological areas, including paediatrics, diagnostics and tinnitus counselling, where she ultimately developed a passion for adult rehabilitation and helping not simply hearing care clients but developing the skills of our network of clinicians. Mona’s consistent relationship-focused ability to train and foster the talents of all client-facing team members saw her move into State Management and national training roles, before advancing to her current role as Chief Audiologist and Head of Clinical Governance and Training for the entire Audika Clinical Network across Australia and New Zealand. 

Mona’s focus is now on ensuring every client that Audika interacts with is achieving a better quality of life, through a clinically consistent, professional and high-standard of care provided by all clinical team members. This client outcomes focus is the key driver in developing and reimagining the future of modern hearing care at Audika.



^ Results provide a preliminary indication only and do not replace a full hearing test.

~ 60 day change of mind return period: Devices and all accessories must be returned to Audika in an undamaged condition within the 60 day change of mind return period. If the devices are returned in a damaged condition, Audika may in its sole discretion retain payment of the hearing device(s) and/or claim from you any outstanding balance on the cost of the hearing device(s). The 60 day change of mind return period does not impact and is in addition to your statutory consumer law rights, and any product warranty offered with the device(s).