Please complete the appointment booking form below.

We will call you back within 24 hours.

Melbourne’s leading hearing health care specialists for over 18 years with centres in 9 convenient locations.


* indicates required
/ / ( dd / mm / yyyy )

Auditory Deprivation

Impact of untreated hearing loss over time

Hearing loss, in most cases, occurs gradually over time. As a result, many people wait months or even longer before seeking professional help. You cannot delay doing something about your hearing loss and think that it will not affect you.

This is because, understanding sounds that you hear including speech, involves so much more than just the ear.
Once the ear has detected sound, it is sent via neural pathways to the many areas of the brain that process it. This allows you to understand what the ear has detected, whether it is music, environmental sounds or the spoken words. It is your brain that actually "hears and understands".

Hearing loss can prevent some of the sounds getting to the brain. As the hearing gets worse, the brain receives less and less sound stimulation and the hearing nerves and areas in the brain responsible for the processing of sound start to weaken. This is known in the field of hearing science as "auditory deprivation". Even if the hearing levels don't change, over time the brain continues being deprived of certain sounds and the effects on the brain are ongoing. Ultimately the brain can "forget" how to hear and process sounds properly and the largest effect is seen on the ability to understand speech.

The longer you go without sound, the greater the reduction of speech understanding and the more permanent the effect. Clinical studies are repeatedly showing that the sooner a hearing problem is addressed - usually by the use of hearing aids- the better.

In summary, the effects of auditory deprivation are:
  • Trouble understanding speech
  • Significant difficulty understanding speech in background noise
  • Difficulty identifying where sound is coming from 
  • Psychological - anxiety, denial, frustrations, fatigue, shame, social isolation, depression, grief
  • Dementia - people with severe hearing loss are more likely to develop cognitive decline
The best ways to prevent auditory deprivation are:
  • Protect your hearing so you don't get a hearing loss in the first place
  • If you feel you may have a hearing loss have it tested as soon as possible
  • If you do have a hearing loss, early amplification (the use of hearing aids) can prevent auditory deprivation and help get the hearing pathways in the brain working again
  • If you know you have a hearing loss, hearing aids have been recommended but you haven't made a decision to acquire them, don't delay further - give us a call on 1300 761 021
  • If you have hearing loss and have hearing aids but are not wearing them, try to wear them or contact us so we can help you

How hearing loss affects your life

Hearing is one of our most precious senses; it is essential for communicating, participating, socializing, relaxing and interacting. Hearing helps you to fully enjoy your life.

Hearing loss will disrupt all aspects of your life; professional, family and social life will be impacted. This is because it affects your ability to communicate and participate and it may lead to feeling frustrated, discouraged, embarrassed, isolated and even depressed. Read more to find out the five stages that people go through when coping with hearing loss.
Read more

Should I use one or two hearing aids?

Just like trying to look both ways with one eye, walking with one leg or trying to cut your steak with one hand, hearing with only one ear is also difficult, limiting and physically tiring.

Brains are designed to work with two ears. Information from both ears is used to help you identify the direction of sounds, distinguish speech in noise and deliver a balanced stereo quality to sound. Read more to find out how two well-fitted hearing aids will benefit you...
Read more

Keep hearing aid batteries out of the reach of children

Batteries used in hearing aids are small “button” size batteries and may be a hazard to young children. In fact, these small coin size batteries are found everywhere in the home including in TV remote controls, kitchen and bathroom scales, flameless candles and tea lights, reading lights, calculators, and talking books, not only hearing aids.

Due to the relatively high number of batteries used with hearing aids - hearing aid batteries will last between 1 and 4 weeks - it is important that all hearing aid users and carers of people using hearing aids are vigilant at keeping batteries out of sight and out of the reach of children. Keep reading to find out more...
Read more