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How to Read Your Hearing Test

You have a moderate hearing loss. "Moderate" means just what it sounds like -- it is worse than "mild," not as bad as "severe."

You have a severe (if most thresholds are 70 to 90 dB HL) or a profound (for scores of 90 dB HL or worse) hearing loss.

You absolutely need hearing aids. They will bring your hearing loss into the "moderate" range, making it possible for you to converse with some degree of effectiveness at distances up to 3 meters, or 10 feet. Still, you will get little consonant information, so you need to combine speechreading (a more accurate term for "lipreading") with what you can hear in order to converse.

You must also take into account your speech discrimination scores ("SDS," or "SD" on your audiogram). If your scores are 50% or worse, communication will require lots of patience all around. All conversations must be face to face, in quiet.

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