It’s helpful to think of a hearing test as a screening rather than an exam. Too many people assume that hearing tests are for people who have a problem, just as vision tests are for people who have difficulty seeing.
But a hearing screening doesn’t just discover hearing loss; it can uncover many physical and medical issues that you may not have known about (and which may not present any symptoms).
A regular hearing examination will allow you and your hearing care provider to:
- Diagnose medical conditions. While most hearing loss is caused by aging, some losses are a result of an underlying medical condition. Diseases such as diabetes may cause hearing problems, while high blood pressure has been linked to both hearing loss and tinnitus. Many patients are able to relieve their hearing problems by treating medical conditions they didn’t know they had!
- Identify potential problems. Much like a vision test, a yearly hearing test allows you to track changes in your hearing and make adjustments as you need them. Your hearing specialist can compare every audiogram you take to the last, allowing her to see how rapidly your hearing is changing and alerting her to potential dangers, including earwax buildup and noise-induced hearing loss.
- Prevent further damage. When hearing problems are allowed to progress, much more is lost than just the ability to hear. Patients may become depressed, suffer from anxiety in public situations, and become increasingly isolated due to the limitations of their conditions. Hearing loss has also been linked to increased injuries in the elderly, as they are less likely to hear car horns, smoke alarms, and other sounds signaling danger.
- Start treatment. Identification of a mild hearing problem can actually be a good thing, as it allows you to prevent hearing loss from getting worse. You can treat hearing loss right away in our offices, as we offer many different types and styles of hearing aids to treat a wide range of hearing problems. As an added bonus, your hearing care provider will walk you through each of your options, letting you know which device will best suit your condition as well as your lifestyle.