Degrees of hearing loss

Degrees of hearing loss

Different levels of hearing loss are referred to as degrees, depending on the severity of impairment.

Degrees of hearing lossHearing threshold (in decibels, dB)Ability to hear speech
None0 – 25 dBNo perceptible difficulty.
Mild26 – 40 dBDifficulty hearing soft speech and conversations, especially in noisier or more reverberant situations, but can understand in quiet environments.
Moderate41 – 55 dBDifficulties understanding speech, especially in the presence of background noise. Higher volume levels are needed for hearing TV or radio.
Moderate to severe56 – 70 dBClarity of speech is considerably affected. Speech has to be louder as usual, difficulties in group conversations will occur.
Severe71 – 90 dBRegular speech is inaudible. Difficulties even with loud speech. Comprehension often only possible through shouting or amplification.
Profound91+ dBEven amplified speech is difficult to understand or even inaudible.