Frequently Asked Questions

How can I improve my hearing when I am out for dinner with friends?
Why is it so difficult to hear in a group?
How can I encourage others to speak more clearly?
How can I hear when people mumble so much?
Why do I find it easier to hear in some settings yet have so much difficulty in other places?

The majority of people presenting with a hearing loss have damage to the tiny and very sensitive hair cells in the inner ear. Our inner ear is a delicate structure called the cochlea – a sac of fluid curled around in a snail shape. A membrane, called the basilar membrane, continues from the outer part of the cochlea for the whole length and consists of 30,000 fibres that send messages from the hair cells to the brain. Some of these hair cells, the outer hair cells, can help us listen more effectively in noisy situations by enhancing the sound we want to focus on or helping our brain ignore unnecessary sounds.

Unfortunately these hair cells are vulnerable to wear and tear, noise and other factors.

This is in part one of the reasons why you find it easier to hear in some situations, such as a quiet lounge room compared to a noisy restaurant.

Some other factors that may contribute to this variation in listening ability include how clearly the other person is speaking, the acoustics of the room (hard surfaces causing echo and distortion) and your familiarity with the speaker and topic of conversation.

Click here for Information Sheets (links to Vicdeaf website)

To book an:

  • Audiological Assessment
  • Hearing Loss Rehabilitation session
  • Devices Showroom visit

please email:

Why do I have so much difficulty understanding someone with an accent?
Why does my partner seem to have 'selective' listening?