While aging is one of the leading causes of hearing loss, there are several other factors that may indicate it’s time to see your hearing care provider.

All ages can be screened for hearing loss. Newborns are now routinely tested before they leave the hospital, and school-age children are screened at their schools or at their physicians’ offices. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, adults should be screened at least every decade through age 50 and at three-year intervals thereafter.

Because hearing loss often occurs gradually, few who suffer from it realize how it affects all aspects of health, including overall quality of life. Research over the past 15 years has only begun to stress the importance of seeking treatment when hearing loss becomes a factor in daily life, but only one in five people actually seeks treatment after learning they aren’t hearing their best. The four in five Americans who don’t use hearing aids can sometimes delay treatment for so long that communication — even in the most optimal situations — becomes problematic.

Many are not aware of the social and psychological effects of hearing loss; if they were, they would take their hearing health more seriously. Impaired hearing is strongly associated with increased risk of dementia, anxiety, and depression, as well as poorer physical and mental health.

Our Hearing Tests: In 4 Easy Steps!
Hearing problems affect your health and your overall quality of life, so it’s important to get regular hearing checkups to catch potential issues early. Learn about our four-step initial hearing assessment that helps us evaluate your hearing health, understand your unique listening needs, and – together with you – create a solution that fits your individual lifestyle.

Step One: The Interview

The interview between you and your hearing-care specialist helps us determine how you’re experiencing hearing loss and what may be contributing to it.

Typical questions include:

  • Does anyone else in your family have hearing loss?
  • Have you had any illnesses or injuries that may affect your hearing?
  • Have you taken any medications that might impact your hearing?
  • Have you been exposed to excessive noise on the job or during recreational activities?
  • In what situations do you experience the greatest hearing difficulties?
  • In what types of situations would you like to hear better?

Pre-hearing test interview

Step Two: The Examination

Next, our highly trained provider will physically examine your ears, using an otoscope to check for signs of infection, wax buildup, ear damage, or other issues that could affect your hearing. The process is quick and painless, taking just a couple seconds per ear.

Hearing loss examination

Step Three: Key Tests

The third step involves determining the specific nature of your hearing difficulty using one or more of the following tests, depending on your needs:

  • Audiometric pure tone evaluation to measure your hearing at different frequencies.
  • Speech evaluation to measure how well you hear and understand ordinary conversation at different volumes.
  • Immittance middle-ear evaluation to measure how your eardrum and hearing react to varying degrees of air pressure.

Your provider will chart your hearing test results on an audiogram, which can show any hearing impairment frequency by frequency.

Diagnostic hearing test

Step Four: Treatment Options

In the final step of this assessment, we recommend and explain the benefits of specific solutions – if needed – for your level of hearing loss and your individual lifestyle. Options include:

Hearing Aids
Most hearing loss can be treated with hearing aids, which have evolved dramatically over the years to offer cutting-edge technology in discreet, diverse styles with a wide range of functions and features.

Today’s digital hearing aids come in a variety of designs (including invisible-in-the canal models) with a wide range of functions and features to address an individual’s specific needs.
Surgery & Implants
More severe hearing losses may benefit from devices surgically inserted into the ear to improve hearing, facilitate lip-reading, and make it easier to distinguish certain sounds. They’re typically most helpful for deaf individuals or people with profound hearing loss who don’t sufficiently benefit from hearing aids.

A few examples of surgical implants:

  • Cochlear Implants
  • Middle Ear Implants
  • Bone-Anchored Hearing Systems
  • Auditory Brainstem Implants

Hearing aid fitting
Assistive Listening Devices
ALDs are specialized hearing technologies that help people with all degrees of hearing loss. They can improve face-to-face communication and enhance your experience with media such as televisions and telephones.

Start Your Journey to Better Hearing

Request an appointment with one of our audiologists today.

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