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Types of hearing loss

There are 3 overall types of hearing loss: sensorineural, conductive, and mixed hearing loss.
In treating hearing loss, it is important to understand the differences in order to determine the best treatment option.

What are the main types of hearing loss?

The main types of hearing loss are differentiated based on which part of the ear is damaged:

  • Sensorineural hearing loss caused by damage to the inner ear or hearing nerve. This prevents the damaged area from properly transmitting sound to the brain.
  • Conductive hearing loss is caused by damage in the external and / or middle ear and, in most cases, it is medically treatable.
  • Mixed hearing loss - In some cases, both aspects of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss are present; this is referred to as mixed hearing loss.

Degree of hearing loss

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Do you think you have hearing loss?

Complete the steps below. Use the form below or quote the 'Audika' website when booking your appointment. All fields required.

Question 1 – Around the table
Do you have trouble following conversations, when there are 4 or more people present?
Have you received advice from your family or friends to get your hearing tested?
Do you ever struggle to understand what others are saying because you cannot hear properly?
Do you find yourself turning up the TV or radio even when the volume is loud enough for others?

Your Result:

A hearing test is relevant for you

Your answers indicate that you experience symptoms of hearing loss. We strongly recommend booking a hearing test in one of our clinics.

The result is an indication. An in-person hearing test can determine if you have a hearing loss.



Book your free hearing test:

Your Result:

A hearing test seems relevant for you

Your answers indicate that you experience some symptoms of hearing loss. We recommend booking a hearing test in one of our clinics.

The result is an indication. An in-person hearing test can determine if you have a hearing loss.



Book your free hearing test:

Your Result:

It cannot be determined here if a hearing test is relevant for you

Your answers do not indicate that you experience symptoms of hearing loss. However, if you experience trouble hearing, we recommend booking a hearing test in one of our clinics.

The result is an indication. An in-person hearing test can determine if you have a hearing loss.




Book your free hearing test:

Step 1 of 6

Sensorineural hearing loss

Sensorineural hearing loss (or sensorineural deafness) is the most common type of hearing loss. When experiencing sensorineural hearing loss, sounds may be unclear or difficult to hear. Voices in conversation may be distorted, and it may seem like others are mumbling.

Causes of sensorineural hearing loss

Treating sensorineural hearing loss
This type of hearing loss is often treated with hearing aids.

Sensorineural hearing loss

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Conductive hearing loss

Conductive hearing loss is usually a result of a disruption to the sound's path as it travels from the outer / middle ear to the inner ear.

Causes of conductive hearing loss
This type of hearing loss can also be caused by an obstruction in the ear canal, such as ear wax or liquid preventing sound from reaching the ear drum.

Treating conductive hearing loss
Treatment for conductive hearing loss includes: ear wax removal, medical treatments, and surgical treatments.

Conductive hearing loss

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What our clients are saying

"The clinician went above and beyond to provide the correct hearing aids and the correct setting up of them for my individual hearing loss."
I. Mewett, client at Audika Warners Bay
"Experience was fantastic. Made the transition to hearing aids with ease. Team at Glenorchy was fantastic and very helpful...10/10. Happy customer."
L. Cook, client at Audika Glenorchy 
"The whole experience was without stress or worry and the follow up appointment yesterday was very helpful with a little fine tuning. All good and very happy."
J. Hill, client at Audika Mandurah

How to describe hearing loss

 - High or low-frequency: Indicates whether you are unable to hear high or low-pitched sounds (i.e. high frequency hearing loss means you cannot hear high-pitched sounds)

High frequency hearing loss 
Low frequency hearing loss 

- Unilateral or bilateral: Indicates whether one (unilateral) or both (bilateral) ears are affected by hearing loss
Bilateral hearing loss
Unilateral hearing loss

- Progressive or sudden hearing loss: Indicates whether the hearing loss happens quickly or gradually over time

- Acquired or congenital: Indicates whether your hearing was present at birth or acquired at a later stage in life
Congenital hearing loss

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Tinnitus: ringing in the ears

Tinnitus is a ringing, buzzing, whistling, roaring, hissing sound in the ear that only you can hear. Tinnitus affects 15-20% of people, and it is very often one of the first signs of hearing loss.

The most common cause is exposure to excessive noise, which damages the tiny hair cells in the inner ear. The sound of tinnitus is the result of your brain trying to compensate for the loss of hair cells. The brain misinterprets the reduced signals from the ear, resulting in a perception of sound, or tinnitus.

Online Tinnitus Test Tinnitus
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.