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Deafness/Hearing Impairment/listening Binaural Beats with one ear


I lost my left ear's audibility at the age of 13yrs(now I'm 30yr old).Right ear works perfectly and is sensitive to sounds. I also hear plain long beep in my head or ear(i dont know). Can i listen Binaural Beats? If yes,is there any particular care to be taken? e.g. volume,time-limit,etc.will it harm in my case? I'm not using any kind of hearing aid for left ear. Please help with your advice.

Dear Abha,

Binaural beats occur when sounds are presented to each ear, but the frequency or pitch presented to one ear is slightly different than the sound presented to the other ear.  If your hearing is about the same in both ears, then you will hear a sound with a "beat" or "pulsation".
If in your case, your left ear is not functioning, then this pulsation or "binaural beat" cannot occur, because the phenomenon requires two ears that hear about the same.

If you are questioning whether listening to the sounds may be harmful to you, the answer is as follows:  only the good ear will be stimulated, so the same rules that apply to any sound or noise will apply here as well.  In other words, according to OSHA if the sounds are 90 dB SPL, then they can be listened to safely for up  to 8 hours;  if they are 95 dB SPL they can be listened to safely for up to  4 hours.  For each additional 5 dB the safe listening time is cut in half.

NIOSH has slightly more stringent standards, but I think this should answer your question.

Thanks for asking,

Dr. Reiter

Deafness/Hearing Impairment

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Levi A. Reiter, Ph.D.


I am a full Professor of Audiology at Hofstra University and also in private practice. I can answer questions regarding hearing loss, auditory diagnoses, hearing aids, assistive listening devices, deafness


I have been teaching audiology at Hofstra University for 33 years. I have been in private practice for 31 years. I do hearing assessments, auditory diagnostic tests which are physiological, e.g., ABR, OAEs, etc. I also have over 30 years experience in fitting, and dispensing hearing aids.

ASHA (American Speech-Language and Hearing Associaton AAA (American Academy of Audiology)

My articles have appeared in: Journal of Auditory Research J of Speech and Hearing Disorders J of Speech and Hearing Research The Hearing Journal J of the American Tinnitus Association The ASHA Leader Plus.......

I have a Ph.D. from the University of Rochester, and two post-doctoral fellowships from NIH and NICHD. I am Board Certified by the American Academy of Audiology, and hold a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association. I also have numerous professional publications in the field of Audiology.

Awards and Honors
Fellowship from the National Institute of Health Sciencess Fellowship from the National Institute of Child Development Scholarships from the U of Rochester, Connecticut College Faculty Development grants from Hofstra U. The Scholars Award from the American Academy of Audiology The ACE award from the American Speech & Hearing Association

Past/Present Clients
Not sure what this means. I see clients of all ages and from all parts of the world.

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