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Single Sided Deafness, or
Unilateral Hearing Loss, or Monaural Hearing

These web pages are on the subject of "Single Sided Deafness", SSD. Also known as being deaf in one ear, or monaural hearing, or unilateral hearing loss, UHL. At the moment these pages are geared to my own personal experiences and conclusions, and I write these notes with the hope that they may prove to be useful to others with this condition. My own situation is that I have been deaf in my left ear since birth; I have never known stereo in my life. The hearing in my right ear is excellent. My notes and conclusions are based on my own experience, hence they may not be entirely universally true. In particular, I gather that those that have lost hearing in one ear due to accident or illness have some hope of returning to a binaural state through various sorts of hearing aids. In my case, I am hopelessly monaural.

Much of the discussion here I have learned from observation over the years, and my motivation in writing these webpages is that I think I would have been much better off in life if I had known some of these facts earlier on. There is also a dearth of information about single sided deafness, insofar as I can find it. A google search on most medical conditions generally provides a host of relevant, usually reliable, webpages, but not so SSD. The two main goals of these pages are: (a) by understanding the various issues, there may be less stress and mystery about the situation (e.g., if you run screaming from a noisy room, it is normal, not because there is something flawed about your personality) and (b) by understanding the various issues, one can then develop strategies for dealing constructively with the various problems.

I was initially a little hesitant about setting up this website. However, since this site has been up, I've been getting about one or two e-mails a month from people all over the world thanking me for it. A worthwhile endeavor indeed! I like to hear from people, although I may not always have the time to reply.

Please note that I am not a medical doctor, or otherwise associated with medical acoustics, although I do work on acoustics in the ocean. I also do not claim 100% complete and thorough accuracy on these pages; opinions, ignorance, and misinformation may sneek in, but I try to avoid that.


A talk at the Spring 2009 meeting of the Acoustical Society of America:
A personal perspective on unilateral hearing loss. J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 125, pp. 2632-2632 (April 2009)

The Abstract     •     The Talk

Last Modified May 2009. Brian Dushaw