I Have SSD

Here is a copy of my post "I have SSD":

Hello. My name is George Hernandez and I have Single Sided Deafness (SSD). SSD means I'm deaf in one ear — I've been completely deaf in my left ear since I was an infant.

This is my "coming out" post for SSD. While a fair number of people know I have SSD, this is the first time that I've explicitly stated it on this website or any public forum. I don't care who knows anymore. I will not live in fear with how people might use this information. I am not going to concern myself with how other people will think differently of me when they find out I have SSD. If anything, I want people to know ASAP so that we can deal with any logistical or pragmatic issues related with SSD as simply as possible.

Why am I coming out now? Well on 2007-11-13, I was poking around Wikipedia and I somehow got onto the page about Unilateral hearing loss [W]. One of the links on that page was for Single Sided Deafness, or Unilateral Hearing Loss [http://909ers.apl.washington.edu/~dushaw/SSD/index.html] by Brian Dushaw. After a few minutes of going over his pages, I felt compelled to send him an email. Here is our little exchange:

I found your pages on Single Sided Deafness (SSD) a few minutes ago.

I too am completely deaf in my left ear while my right ear hears fine. I've had SSD my whole life. SSD is a fairly big thing but it's also fairly minor. SSD is just one fact about me.

I just wanted to say that I found your pages surprisingly very comforting. My SSD is something that I have avoided telling people but I'm sort of tired of that. The frankness of your pages certainly helps me feel whole.

Thanks again!

-George Hernandez

Hi George,

I am glad you found the web pages helpful. Just so you know, I get a couple of compliments like yours a month on the web page - we are all in this together! :) The e-mails tell me that putting the web page together was entirely worthwhile. Thanks for taking the time to send me the note.


I've started a page on SSD for several reasons:

  • In honor of Brian. I've been leaning towards being more open about my SSD but it was his site that pushed me over the edge. Thanks!
  • To explore the topic of SSD myself.
  • The world can use another page on SSD!

I'm introverted (possibly related to SSD) but I'm an open person and it is very freeing to come out!

Defining SSD

Single Sided Deafness (SSD). Aka Unilateral Hearing Loss (UHL); being deaf in one ear; having a bad ear. I personally prefer the term SSD over UHL because UHL sounds like the loss is occurring presently. SSD assumes that the other ear is "normal", otherwise the person has a some sort of plain old deafness! A further distinction should be made about degrees of hearing loss.

As far as loudness, the "volume" of sound is sound pressure level (SPL in decibels or dB), as placed on a unitless logarithmic scale that correlates the sound pressure (Prms in Pa) and the ambient sound pressure (P0 in Pa):

SPL = 20*log(Prms/P0)

Here are some common noises in dB:

Globally, approximately 0.1% are deaf. I don't know what the stats are for people with SSD.

Living With SSD

Here are a few simple things about living with SSD.


Links that lead to off-site pages about Single Sided Deafness (SSD) or Unilateral Hearing Loss.

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