A complete diagnostic evaluation is an important first step in evaluating your ability to hear and process speech. If you think you have hearing loss, it’s important to determine the degree and type of hearing loss you have. This information determines the technologies and strategies that can help you live your life to the fullest.
What to Expect
First, your audiologist will review your medical history. If you have diabetes, asthma, cancer or heart disease, it’s important to let her know. Treatment for these conditions can affect your hearing. It’s also helpful to bring a list of all medications and supplements you take to your appointment.
Next, your ears will be examined with an otoscope. This is completely painless and allows the audiologist to visually evaluate your tympanic membrane (eardrum), ear structure and earwax. Excess earwax, damage to the eardrum and deformities in ear structure can interfere with hearing.
Pure tone audiometry, bone conduction and speech testing will determine your ability to hear tones at different frequencies, how you hear with background noise, how sound is conducted in your ears and assess your ability to hear and process speech in a variety of situations. The specific tests that are performed depend on the type and level of your hearing loss.
Deciphering the Results
Hinderliter Hearing Services records the test results on an audiogram. Once the testing is complete, we will review the results with you. The audiogram provides a visual representation of your hearing ability. Each ear is tested individually, and the results of each ear are evaluated separately as well as how they impact your overall ability to hear.
If you have hearing loss, Hinderliter Hearing Services will make recommendations that may include wearing hearing aids and strategies to help you understand speech better.
If you need Hearing Aids
If you need hearing aids, the audiologist will discuss available options. Hinderliter Hearing Services carries devices from most major manufacturers. That means you’ll have a complete array of styles from which to choose. We’ll make sure that your hearing aids are perfect for your type and level of hearing loss, your lifestyle and any ability or dexterity issues you may have.
Plan on an hour for a complete diagnostic evaluation and discussion of the results.