Hearing loss has a tendency to sneak up on most people. It is often so gradual that most people are not aware of it until it becomes a significant problem. If you have trouble following conversations or frequently ask others to repeat themselves, it is a good time for a hearing test. Even if you haven’t noticed any of these issues, a hearing test is an essential part of maintaining good health, just like dental and vision care, so it’s a good idea to stay on top of things.
What Happens During a Hearing Test?
A hearing test is so simple and non-intrusive that you will laugh about the fact that you were ever nervous about getting one. The best way to relax about your hearing test is to understand the various instruments and what really goes on during testing.
The instruments used in hearing tests are pretty simple and not very threatening. Typical instruments include:
- an otoscope, which is a handheld device with a light and magnifying lens for looking into your ear canal
- a high-tech set of headphones specially designed to block out background noise
- an audiometer, a small, battery-operated instrument which looks like a new age digital radio.
For mobile testing, audiometers come equipped with a variety of features like GPS, background noise sensors, and Wi-Fi connectivity. These features contribute to the accuracy of the test and an increased capacity to analyze test results almost instantly.
The first part of a hearing test involves finding an area at your location for setting up testing equipment. Some characteristics of a good place for testing include: a couple of chairs and a small table within an area that is isolated from noise and distractions. Setup is about as involved as taking your laptop out of its case and plugging in the headphones.
Once the equipment is setup, most technicians begin with a physical examination of your ears using the otoscope to look for any obstructions or issues that are visually apparent inside the ear canal. In some cases, wax buildup or other obstructions can be the cause of hearing loss.
After a quick look into your ears, you will put on and adjust the fit of the high-tech earphones. Once achieving a good, comfortable fit, you can then sit back and relax while the testing technician gives you instructions on how to respond to the different sounds you will hear.
Actual testing involves broadcasting a series of sounds with different volumes, tones, and pitches. You will respond to each sound you hear through the headphones according to the instructions you are given by the technician.
Discussing the Results
After broadcasting all of the sounds in the series, you will take off the headphones and go over the results of the test with the technician. If there are any specific issues detected during the testing process, the technician will inform you about their implications, corrective options, or recommend further testing.
A hearing test is the first step in identifying diminished hearing capacity. Like dental and vision care, hearing care is a vital part of overall health care. With the availability of mobile hearing tests by Hearing At Home, testing can be done in your home, office, care center, or wherever you are comfortable. Contact us for more information, or schedule a Hearing At Home hearing test in the Richmond or Front Royal location of your choice.