Hearing impairment affects more than just your ability to hear — it affects your quality of life. The Hearing Center stresses the importance of an accurate and timely hearing test. The hearing evaluation is just the beginning of your treatment, and it’s essential to setting your unique care plan in motion and taking action on hearing loss. Your in-depth hearing evaluation will help us craft a treatment plan that renews your ability to hear, allowing you to truly hear your best and live life on your terms.
Why should I have a hearing evaluation?
A diagnostic hearing evaluation is the first step in determining your hearing capabilities. If you have a hearing loss, it will determine the type, degree and configuration of the hearing loss and the treatment options that are appropriate. The cause of a hearing loss may be as minor as excessive earwax or a serious medical condition.
Diagnostic hearing evaluations identify hearing loss and give your Audiologist important information to help determine the best course of action for treatment. Some types of hearing loss can be treated medically or surgically, so it’s important that these types of hearing loss be ruled out before hearing aids or other treatments are considered.
If it is determined that you could benefit from hearing aids, the diagnostic hearing evaluation helps your Audiologist know which hearing aids will be most appropriate for your hearing needs.
Who performs the hearing test?
A licensed audiologist will perform all of your services at the Hearing Center at Eye Consultants of Atlanta.
What can I expect to happen at my appointment?
A hearing test is a non-invasive, rather simple procedure. The evaluation will probably last about 30 to 40 minutes in length, but you should also allow for time to discuss the test results with the audiologist and ask questions.
It is recommended that you bring a family member with you to the evaluation appointment. Most audiologists agree that hearing loss is a family issue. It helps to have another supportive person at the appointment to help you understand the information and recommendations.
Before your appointment, a complete medical history will be completed. The audiologist will want to hear about any complaints you have about your hearing. Your audiologist will pay special attention to any concerns you have about exposure to noise, tinnitus and balance problems. Make sure that you take a full list of any medications and supplements you are taking with you to your appointment.
The audiologist will use an otoscope to look into your ear to check for anything that might affect hearing evaluation results or require referral to your physician. Several tests may be performed, including an audiogram which measures how well you can hear soft tones at different pitches, and speech testing which measures how well you can hear and understand speech in both quiet and background noise. All testing is performed in a sound-treated room with equipment that has been calibrated to national standards.
Following your test, the audiologist will explain the results to you. You will receive answers to the following questions:
- Do I have a hearing loss?
- What kind of hearing loss do I have?
- What is the cause of the hearing loss?
- Is my hearing loss permanent?
- Is it recommended that I have a medical referral?
- What does this mean in terms of what I can and cannot hear?
- Why am I having trouble hearing in different situations?
- What are the best treatment options for my hearing loss?
Be sure to ask questions and establish a relationship with your audiologist. You will want to be clear on any information you receive so that you can be an active participant in finding hearing solutions that work best for you and your lifestyle.