Untreated hearing loss can lead to cognitive decline, balance problems, and a variety of other negative mental and physical health conditions.
Many individuals have an untreated hearing loss because they aren’t aware of it and continue to do damage to their hearing and overall health.
My team and I are concerned about the fact that so many people are missing out on the rich, rewarding lifestyle they deserve in Oregon and Idaho because they have never had a hearing evaluation or haven’t had one in a very long time.
To help ease your mind about having your hearing tested, here is what you can expect during a hearing evaluation.
A Friendly Conversation
We like to be open and upfront with everyone who comes into our office because it creates a firm foundation for our partnership toward better hearing.
Consequently, we begin with a friendly conversation that involves your occupation, lifestyle, and questions and concerns about hearing loss and hearing care.
Our conversation will also cover any hearing-related family history you might have, your medical history, and the medications you are taking as well as why you came in for a hearing assessment.
We’ll use all of this information to help us personalize your hearing care to fit your specific needs and personal preferences.
Physical Examination Of Your Ears
To develop an understanding of what might be causing any hearing problems you have, your audiologist will conduct a physical examination of your ears using an otoscope.
An otoscope is a magnifying glass with a tapered tip and a small light, which allows us to examine your ear canal and eardrum.
In some cases, a growth, tumor, bug, earwax, or inflammation may be preventing sound from passing through the outer ear to the middle and inner ear structures for proper sound processing.
This type of conductive hearing loss is not usually permanent and can be treated with minor procedures or medications.
Hearing Diagnostic Tests
After the physical examination of your ears, your audiologist will place you in a soundproof room or booth and fit you with headphones to conduct a variety of diagnostic tests.
The first test will involve transmitting different tones at varying volumes and pitches to which you will respond.
In addition, you’ll hear spoken words at different tones and pitches. Then we’ll add a number of background effects to simulate your capacity to distinguish words from background noise in a real world environment.
Another common test bypasses the hearing canal by transmitting sound directly to the inner ear through the bones behind your ears.
This test helps us to identify sensorineural hearing loss, which is a permanent condition that is often treated with a hearing instrument.
Also included in testing is a tympanometry test, which involves sealing the entrance to your ear canal with a tympanometer and transmitting a tone in order to evaluate the response of your eardrum to sound stimulation.
Discussing Test Results
Once your test is complete, your audiologist will provide you with the results and explain what each part of the test means.
Because we are working with you toward better hearing, we encourage your questions and comments during our discussion so we can come up with the best solution for your hearing challenges together.
If you show no measurable hearing loss but are at risk for developing noise-induced hearing loss due to your occupation or lifestyle, we’ll discuss hearing protection and preventive measures you can take to maintain healthy hearing.
Dove Hearing Center Provides Comprehensive Hearing Evaluations
Like cholesterol tests, checking your blood pressure, and annual physical exams, a hearing evaluation is necessary to identify the type and severity of your hearing loss to develop a treatment plan and/or head off any potential negative health consequences.
Whether you suspect hearing loss or not, the best way for the team at Dove Hearing Center and I to provide you with better hearing is to begin with a comprehensive hearing evaluation.
Contact us to learn more about the benefits of regular hearing assessments or to begin your journey to better hearing by scheduling a hearing evaluation.