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Literal MeaningPlay
Used to describe actual hearing loss, often due to extreme noise exposure. SlideFirefighters' sirens can deafen you without proper ear protection.
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Permanent EffectPlay
Implies that the hearing loss might be irreversible. SlideRegularly using power tools without earmuffs can deafen over time.
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Serious TonePlay
Often used in solemn or serious contexts due to its association with disability. SlideThe veterans were deafened in the line of duty.