If you have never visited a hearing care professional, you probably don’t realize what to expect. You are in for a pleasant experience that is interesting, informative, and a great start on your path to better hearing. You should feel at ease during this visit because you have taken an important step and have started to explore answers and solutions to your hearing needs.
Your sense of hearing is a vital link to your world – a source of pleasure, information and communication. A hearing assessment by a qualified hearing care professional is an important step in learning more about your hearing capabilities. If you have a hearing loss, there is something can do to take control of the situation. Hearing loss should not get in the way of enjoy your life.
The Hearing Assessment
Your hearing care professional will discuss your hearing history to understand what factors have influenced your hearing, and also to get more information on your personal hearing needs:
- How you think you are doing in different situations.
- What you are doing to deal with hearing issues in your everyday life.
The Hearing Evaluation Audiogram
Your hearing care professional will conduct a thorough assessment of your hearing in a sound controlled setting, usually a sound booth or quiet room. While wearing an earphone on each ear, you will listen to quiet sounds an indicate when you hear each one by pressing a button or raising your hand. You may be asked to repeat words. The instructions will be clear, and the test wil be as brief as possible to obtain the necessary information. The test is comfortable. All you have to do is listen and respond.
The sounds you hear vary in pitch from a deep bass to a high treble, measured on a “frequency scale” from 250 to 8000Hz. This range is the most important for hearing of everyday sounds and speech. Lower pitched bass sounds have a lower number on the scale and higher pitched, treble sounds have a higher number. The volume of each sound is adjusted until the softest level for each sound is detected. This level is called your “threshold.”
Your hearing care professional will interpret the results of your hearing evaluation and explain them to you clearly. If you have a hearing loss, hearing instruments may be recommended. Fortunately, hearing instrument can help most people and today’s choices are easy to try, often, right in the office, or in your own home. People who use hearing instruments report an improved quality of life, and a new dimension in hearing and belonging.