People may ignore a hearing screening if they do not sense considerable hearing loss or hearing problems. However, since hearing loss often develops slowly over time, you may not be aware of slight or gradual changes in your hearing. That is why it is important to have regular hearing checkups as they will help identify early signs of hearing loss. Establishing your baseline hearing also helps in the diagnosis of certain medical ear conditions that can cause hearing loss or tinnitus at a later time.
While excessive noise exposure and aging are the most common causes of hearing loss, an underlying medical condition can also cause a hearing problem. A hearing test and your case history can help determine whether your hearing loss is caused by aging, excessive sound exposure, or certain medical conditions.
Your audiologist may recommend further testing if the results of a routine hearing screening indicate the need for a medical referral to a specialist such as an otolaryngologist or otologist.
If you have confirmed hearing loss, it is important to keep up with your regular hearing tests. It will help your audiologist monitor your hearing, identify factors that may be contributing to the hearing loss, and provide appropriate recommendations and treatment. Regular hearing tests can help in the following ways:
Hearing aids can stimulate the degenerating auditory system and provided new sensory information to the brain. Your audiologist will test your hearing ability and ensure that the amplification from the hearing aids are as prescribed for your hearing loss. If your hearing changes at a later time, your audiologist can usually reprogram your hearing devices so that they conform to a different prescription.
Patients with hearing loss are more likely to experience tinnitus, which is a persistent buzzing, ringing, hissing, or whistling noise in their ear. This noise in the ear can make it difficult for them to concentrate or sleep. Your audiologist will test your hearing, gather information about your health history and lifestyle to try to identify the root cause of your tinnitus and recommend possible treatment options.
A hearing test can help in the diagnosis of certain balance disorders that stem from the ears such as Meniere’s Disease, Positional Vertigo, Acoustic Neuromas, and Sudden Onset Hearing Loss. An earlier diagnosis can assist you in receiving appropriate treatment immediately.
It is better to get your hearing checked regularly even if you do not have any problems or hearing loss. A regular hearing screening can help you identify gradually developing hearing problems before they can significantly impact your hearing ability and become more difficult to treat. Those with milder hearing loss typically respond better to treatment than those with severe long-standing hearing losses who have not been treated.
Hearing loss is linked to heart conditions, cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, and other chronic diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and more. Regular hearing screenings can show warning signs of these medical conditions and help you get the required care sooner.
Age-related hearing loss is a common condition. It can impact your ability to communicate and understand speech and therefore impact your quality of life. You can monitor your hearing by scheduling regular visits to your audiologist. They will evaluate your hearing and recommend the best solution to help overcome your hearing problem.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. Chris Hoffmann for a routine hearing test.