Prevention of blindness and deafness

Grades of hearing impairment

Disabling hearing loss: refers to hearing loss greater than 40 dB in the better hearing ear in adults and greater than 30 dB in the better hearing ear in children.

Note: While audiometric descriptors may provide a useful summary of an individual’s hearing thresholds, they should not be used as the sole determinant for the provision of hearing aids. The ability to detect pure tones using earphones in a quiet environment is not in itself a reliable indicator of hearing disability. Audiometric descriptors alone should not be used as the measure of difficulty experienced with communication in background noise, the primary complaint of individuals with hearing loss.