Are you concerned about a persistent hearing problem (whether yours or your child’s) and don’t know what to do about it? If so, then you need a hearing test or audiogram to determine the extent of your problem.
Statistics indicate that about 11 million individuals in the UK have hearing loss, making it the second most prevalent disability in the country. Nonetheless, as an ‘undetectable/invisible’ disability, hearing loss often goes unnoticed hence the need to enroll for a hearing test constantly, or in case you notice any issue.
So, how and where do you get a hearing test? To help you grasp what it is all about, here is everything you need to know about a hearing test.
What is a Hearing Test?
Hearing tests are medical assessments performed on your ears to determine the sensitivity of your hearing across the entire speech range. It is commonly known as an audiogram. Usually, this test measures the lowest sound you can hear several points in the whole speech range-
An audiologist does a hearing test, and the outcome of the tests is outlined on an audiogram (graph) to help identify your hearing issues’ causes and severity.
NB: You should ensure that you only consult with a professional and certified audiologist for the best results.
What Happens in a Hearing Test?
The process starts with the audiologist introducing themselves to you and carefully explaining everything that will happen and their order.
- First, the audiologist will need to examine your ears to ascertain you have no wax blockage or any underlying condition that may prevent you from undergoing a hearing test.
- Second, they will inquire about your hearing history. The audiologist will ask various questions like when you started having your hearing problems, how often they occur, or whether you have any previous injuries or underlying conditions that may have prompted your hearing issue.
- Thirdly, your audiologist will then do an audiogram to assess your hearing. Typically, this test takes around 20-30 minutes. The audiologist will play several distinct sounds through special headphones and ask you to respond appropriately as you hear the sound by pressing a button each time, notwithstanding how faint or quiet you feel the sound.
Note: This test is performed on both ears since the results may differ. Afterward, depending on their findings, they may require more tests, although they will inform you accordingly.
Which Signs Should You Look Out for To Determine If You Need A Hearing Test?
Here are some of the most common signs that may mean you need to go for a hearing test include:
- Struggling when listening in conversations, especially when background noise is present
- Constantly asking people during conversations to repeat what they said
- Tinnitus (ringing ear sensation)
- Constant complaints from people about how loudly you talk
What Are the Popular Types Of Hearing Tests?
There are multiple types of hearing tests, such as tone audiometry, tests for speech discrimination, among others for adults. Similarly, for children, audiologists use special screening and tests to assess your child’s hearing capacity.
Ready to learn more about hearing tests? Let’s check out some of the most popular ones.
- Pure tone audiometry: An audiometer generates a flurry of whistles and beeps /pure tones. Usually, you can press a particular button or indicate to show you hear those sounds when responding. This test assesses both your inner ear and outer hearing pathway.
- Speech discrimination tests: this is a unique test that assesses how you hear speech. Essentially, this test requires the patient to repeat the words uttered by the audiologist.
- Online hearing test: If you have a pair of headphones, you can check your hearing in the background noise. This test takes less than four minutes and tests your hearing ability according to your age.
What about the Hearing Test Results?
Ideally, two key ways are used to measure sound:
- Frequency or pitch (either low or high): usually measured in Hz (Hertz)
- Level or volume: usually measured in dB (decibels)
The audiologist will often refer to either of the above when explaining the outcome of the hearing test. Better yet, you can even inquire for a copy of your hearing test results.
Phonak Online Test: Making professional Ear Diagnosis more Accessible
Phonak is an accredited institution established to ensure improved quality of life by offering thorough, accurate, and timely hearing tests and diagnoses. In addition, we make hearing loss diagnosis much more accessible to our patients through our brief online hearing test.
At Phonak, we offer expert, simple yet comprehensive hearing tests and get your results in minutes! Our online hearing test can offer you thorough, swift, and accessible feedback about your hearing ability. So next time you have any hearing problems be sure to visit our page and try our quick three-minute online hearing test today!