Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) is a type of hearing loss that occurs when there is damage to the inner ear or the auditory nerve. The inner ear is responsible for converting sound waves into electrical signals that are sent to the brain. The auditory nerve then carries these signals to the brain, where they are interpreted as sound.

What are the 3 common causes of sensorineural hearing loss?

There are many different causes of SNHL, but some of the most common include:

  • Age: SNHL is more common in older adults.
  • Noise exposure: Exposure to loud noise can damage the inner ear and cause hearing loss.
  • Genetics: Some people are born with a genetic predisposition to SNHL.
  • Medical conditions: Some medical conditions, such as Meniere’s disease and diabetes, can cause SNHL.
  • Head injuries: Head injuries can damage the inner ear or the auditory nerve and cause hearing loss.

What is the most common cause of SNHL?

The most common cause of SNHL is age. As people get older, the hair cells in the inner ear gradually degenerate, which can lead to hearing loss.

Can SNHL be treated?

There is no cure for SNHL, but there are treatments that can help to improve hearing. The most common treatment for SNHL is hearing aids. Hearing aids amplify sound waves, which can help people with SNHL to hear better. In some cases, cochlear implants may be an option. Cochlear implants are electronic devices that are surgically implanted in the inner ear. They can help people with severe to profound hearing loss to hear.

What is the only treatment for sensorineural hearing loss?

The only treatment for SNHL is hearing aids or cochlear implants. There is no cure for SNHL, but these treatments can help to improve hearing and quality of life.


If you think you may have SNHL, it is important to see an audiologist for a hearing test. An audiologist can diagnose your hearing loss and recommend the best treatment option for you.