Hearing is very important in our daily lives. The ear is one of our most important and most complicated sensory organs. We use it in our communication, when we exchange information, enjoy music, and hear all the beautiful sounds of nature. It also makes us aware of various dangers. In other words, a hearing impairment limits our ability to manage and enjoy everyday life.
Hearing problems rarely occur overnight. A hearing loss usually develops and worsens over the years and can be difficult to notice. You get used to it in time and adapt.
But after a period of continuous deterioration, you come to a point where the work of the brain isn’t enough. A person whose hearing is impaired can also become more tired as a lot of energy and concentration is put into trying to hear and even affect the quality of life.
For this reason, a hearing test might be necessary. In this article, we’ll dive into the purpose, procedure, and final results of a completed hearing test that can lead to a higher-quality life.
It’s important to detect a hearing loss in time. If you go too long without addressing this health issue, it can lead to serious consequences. Research shows that untreated hearing loss affects long-term memory, which in turn can increase the risk of dementia.
Poor hearing also affects the mind and the quality of life. The effort to try to hear what is being said can be extremely tiring, which can lead to distancing oneself and withdrawing from social contexts.
The most common cause of hearing loss is aging and the first signs of impaired hearing usually appear around the age of 50. We often don’t notice ourselves when we begin to hear poorly. Many times it is the people around you that notice that you start to turn up the TV volume or ask people to repeat themselves when they talk. It is common to deny that it is your hearing that is the problem, you often think that it is the environment that speaks vaguely.
By checking your hearing through a hearing loss test, you prevent major hearing loss and you can prevent further complications. When you have passed the age of 55, it is recommended to test your hearing once a year.
A hearing test is easily booked here and only takes a few minutes and no referral is needed.
A hearing test begins with a short conversation and a visual examination of the ear canal, a so-called otoscopy. This is done to detect any earwax build-up or other obstructions that may prevent sound from entering. Then the audiologist plays different sound frequencies for you, in one ear at a time. You sit in a quiet room with headphones and press a button every time you hear a sound. The hearing test is called tone audiometry.
After the test, a compilation of the sounds you can hear is made, also known as the hearing curve. The image of this is called an audiogram. If the tone audiometry indicates hearing loss, another test is usually done to see how your brain perceives speech sounds. You will then hear different sentences and be asked to repeat the last word in the sentence. This type of examination is called speech audiometry and the result of the test helps the audiologist understand which frequencies you cannot hear, to find the right hearing aid for you.
A hearing test usually takes about 30 minutes and assessment and selection of a hearing aid take about the same amount of time. However, each case is unique and the results depend on the level of work your audiologist has to do.
Once the results are complete, the audiologist will do their best to explain everything in detail. Usually, if they discover hearing loss, they’ll share the degree of hearing loss. A mild one is between 26-40 decibels, moderate stands at 41-55 decibels, moderate to severe is 57-70 decibels, a severe hearing loss is 71-90 decibels, whereas 91-100 decibels is considered a profound hearing loss. These results will help create a treatment plan, specifically designed for you.
Should it be that your hearing problem is of a type that cannot be treated with, for example, a hearing aid, your audiologist will talk you through the next steps and refer you to the right care provider.
Your hearing health is important and getting your hearing tested can identify problems before they affect your life and lead to many social, emotional, and mental problems if left untreated.
Thankfully, today’s wide range of sophisticated hearing aids with simple and invisible designs is an option for everyone’s personal preferences.
The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.