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Hearing testing involves a wide range of tests that an audiologist can perform to diagnose hearing loss. Although most people recognize when they are suffering from hearing loss, they often do not realize the severity of the problem. Hearing loss occurs over a period of years, and the gradual change makes it difficult for many people to accept when they are suffering from severe hearing loss.
Audiologists are specifically trained to diagnose and treat hearing problems. They conduct hearing testing on a daily basis. Although many family doctors perform hearing testing in their office, if you are an adult and experiencing hearing problems, a visit to an audiologist is the best way to receive an accurate assessment of your hearing problem.
There are a variety of general hearing tests that audiologists can use to conduct hearing testing. They may ask you to wear earphones that emit sounds in varying frequencies. They may also observe you while carrying on a conversation. An audiologist can also look inside your ear as part of the testing process. All of these tests are important to determine exactly what level of hearing loss you are suffering from and how best to treat the problem.
Occasionally, an audiologist may send you to another type of doctor for hearing testing. An ear, nose and throat specialist, or ENT, can work with the audiologist in diagnosing and treating many conditions. Working with these two specialists is often the best way to reach a firm conclusion on what type of hearing loss you are suffering from and the best way to treat the problem.
Once the audiologist completes the hearing testing he may prescribe a hearing aid. Hearing aids sit inside the ear or behind it and amplify noise. Wearing a hearing aid may be frustrating at first. The magnified noise will sound different than the muffled noises that you have become accustomed to.
It is important to work with your audiologist when you first begin wearing a hearing aid. Working with an experienced audiologist can make the transition to wearing a hearing aid as seamless as possible. Many people find that they must try several styles of hearing aids before they find one that is both comfortable and provides quality sound. An audiologist will help you navigate this issue.