Exceptional Hearing Blog

Evaluating Hearing

Even if you think you have normal hearing, you should have your hearing tested by the age of 50 to form a base line audiogram.  After that, you should return to have your hearing screened every 1 – 2 years or after any major illness/hospitalization and if you think your hearing has changed.  

Anything that impacts your health, can impact your ability to hear.  At Exceptional Hearing, we use only state of the art equipment to help you maintain normal hearing, improve your hearing, or allow you the best quality of life possible.  To begin your hearing evaluation, we perform Otoscopy.  This means we thoroughly examine your outer ear and inspect the tympanic membrane (ear drum) for any abnormalities.  In our office we can also show YOU the inside of your ear so that you can see if indeed there is anything blocking your hearing.  This is called video Otoscopy.   

If you are experiencing middle ear problems such as popping or pressure, we will perform a test called Tympanometry.  This is performed with a small probe placed in your outer ear that gently moves the eardrum and makes a graph of this movement called a tympanogram.  This can tell us if you need to follow up with an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor).

After we are sure that your ears are clear and healthy enough for testing, we take you to our ANSI standards calibrated sound booth where you will sit comfortably in peaceful silence.  The sound booth allows us to give you every opportunity to hear sound from the audiometer.  The audiometer (Madesen Itera II) is specially calibrated for our testing purposes.  This allows us the most accurate analysis of your hearing ability.  In the sound booth, insert earphones will be gently placed in your ears.  You will be presented with different pitches of beeping noise until we find the softest point where you can still barely hear the beeps.  After the beeping, we will talk to each other and we will ask you to repeat a series of words first in one ear, then the other, then in both ears with and without visual cues.  Then depending upon your hearing ability, we may do a test that allows you to try and repeat words in a noisy environment.  

If you have hearing loss, we will explain exactly what type of hearing loss it is (conductive, sensorineural, or mixed) and the degree of hearing loss.  In addition, we will review your ability to accurately repeat words with one or both ears.  If you have any questions, we are always happy to answer them.  

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