Social Security Benefits for Hearing Loss
If you often find yourself smiling and nodding in conversations because you just can’t hear what the other person is saying, life can become frustrating. Furthermore, maybe your family constantly ask you to turn the volume on the television down because you’ve got it turned up too loud for them. And maybe the slightest bit of background noise renders you incapable of engaging in conversations that take place in restaurants or at parties. If any of these situations seem familiar to you, you are probably dealing with hearing loss.
The loss of the ability to hear is one of the most disrupting and upsetting things a person can go through. Hearing loss can result from a number of things, such as injury or infection, constant exposure to loud noises, or aging. Fortunately, there are Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits available to individuals who suffer from hearing loss, and you may qualify.
Three Types of Hearing Loss
Hearing loss can be the result of many different things. If you work in a factory with loud machinery and do not wear the proper ear protection, you could see a significant decline in your ability to hear high pitched frequencies, for example. While the loss of hearing is disorienting and difficult, SSD funds can help you afford medical procedures or devices that could help. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has identified three types of hearing loss that they consider when determining who should qualify for benefits:
- Conductive hearing loss from when something blocks sound from traveling through the ear canal and into the ear drum or middle ear.
- Sensorineural hearing loss involving damage to the inner ear or nerve pathways from the inner ear to the brain.
- Mixed hearing loss which is any combination of the two.
While some forms of conductive hearing loss can be corrected, most sensorineural issues cannot. However, medical devices such as hearing aids and cochlear implants can help individuals who suffer from either type of hearing loss.