Hearing loss is quite common, especially as one ages. Many people between the age of 45 to 64 years, experience some degree of hearing loss. For this reason, Doctors recommend a hearing test be done at regular intervals after a certain age. According to the experts, all adults should get their hearing ability tested every 10 years, which should then be conducted every 3 years after the age of 50.
What is a hearing test?
A hearing test is a medical exam of the hearing ability that provides the measurement of the sensitivity of the hearing in a full range of speech. The hearing ability of a person is evaluated by several audio tests in a soundproof booth. The experts can determine the degree of hearing loss and whether the hearing aid is required or not.
When does a hearing test become essential?
If you experience trouble in hearing and find it difficult to converse with people when you are in a crowded area, you may have hearing loss to some extent. Additionally, you may have a certain level of hearing loss, if people are complaining that are raising the volume of TV too high. The hearing loss is often a gradual procedure and you cannot realize the problem. For this reason, you should get your ears checked at regular intervals. You also need to do the hearing tests if your doctor says so, even if you think that your hearing ability is good.
What are the common causes of hearing loss?
There are several conditions that may cause hearing loss in adults, which include:
- Being surrounded by loud noises and machinery when at work
- Listening to loud music
- Accumulation of too much ear wax in the ear canals
- Having an ear infection
- Taking certain medications
- Family history of hearing challenges
No matter what the reason for the hearing problem is, it makes people feel left out in the social events, as they cannot participate. The right choice of hearing aid can solve the problem.
What do the hearing test results mean?
The intensity of sound is measured by the unit named decibel. The intensity of whispering is 30 decibels, normal speech is 60 decibels and shouting is 80 decibels. The breakdown of hearing ability can be defined as-
- 26 to 40 decibels – mid hearing loss
- 41 to 55 decibels – moderate hearing loss
- 56 to 70 decibels – moderate-to-severe hearing loss
- 71 to 90 decibels – Severe hearing loss
- 91 to 100 – Acute hearing loss
A hearing test result shows the severity of hearing loss and whether you have hearing loss in both the ears or in one.
How to treat hearing loss?
When the level of hearing loss is determined by the hearing tests, the right treatment plan is decided. Here are the treatment options depending on the severity.
Hearing loss is often caused by the blockage of earwax. Your doctor can remove earwax with suction or a small tool having a loop at the end.
A few types of hearing loss are treated with surgery. The surgical procedure is done, especially if there is any abnormality of the eardrum or bones of hearing. In case you experience infections along with fluid accumulation repeatedly, a small tube is inserted in the ear to help your ear drain.
The hearing loss can be treated effectively with a hearing aid if it is caused by damage in the inner ear. Different types of hearing aids are available for a different level of damages in the ear.
No matter how uncomfortable or challenging your hearing loss is, you should seek professional advice. Get a hearing test and let your hearing aid specialist decide which kind of treatment you require to live your best possible lifestyle.