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Common FAQs About Hearing Tests

Ear Exam

Age-related hearing loss is one of the most common medical issues in adults. It’s difficult for most people to admit that there is a problem with their hearing, especially when they can instead turn the television up and ask people to repeat themselves. But if this is becoming your norm, you should book a hearing test with an audiologist to rule out any underlying hearing issues. The unknown of hearing tests can be worrisome, but with careful consideration and research, you will soon come to feel more comfortable with the idea. Below, you’ll find five of the most common questions for those who have booked their appointment with an audiologist and want to know what comes next.

What tests should I expect?

An audiologist will determine the best particular exams for your needs and will perform several painless checks. The pure-tone test comes first, which involves wearing headphones and pressing a button whenever you hear a noise. The button you press will determine which ear that you heard it in. Once this test is done, you’ll be given a speech test, where you’ll hear speech overlaid with white noise and crowd noise to check how clearly you can hear it. Your results are plotted on an audiogram and will be used to recommend the best treatment if necessary.

Will I be in there for long?

Testing your hearing can take one-to-two hours, depending on your response to the tests and how long each one takes. You’ll also be sitting down with your audiologist afterwards to discuss the results and the next steps.

Should I bring anything with me?

If you currently have hearing aids, bring those with you. You should also bring a copy of any doctor’s records with you when you head to your appointment. You should have a list of medications that you take regularly and a log of when and where you lose your hearing the most, as this can help you to jog your memory about your hearing loss.

Why should I see an audiologist?

Well, you see an audiologist when you are struggling with your hearing for the most part. However, you can book to have a hearing test at any time and doing so can help you to prevent future issues rather than just fix an existing one.

Will my hearing loss be permanent?

Conductive hearing loss is not permanent as it is due to a blockage - such as a build up of wax - in the ear. If your hearing shows that your loss is sensorineural, then yes, the loss will be permanent as this affects your nerves. You could also be suffering from a mix of the two, and your audiologist will talk you through what this means for the future of your hearing.

Ideally you should now be feeling less anxious at the prospect of a hearing test, but book your appointment and have a chat with your audiologist - it’s a good conversation to have.