The hearing test was created as a medical model to differentiate between various disorders of the ear. It aids us in determining the type of treatment which would be most beneficial to the patient.
There are two parts to the hearing test, Speech testing and Pure-Tone testing. The speech portion gives us information about how loud speech has to be before the patient can hear it and how well the person can understand once speech is made loud enough. Pure-Tones tell us how sensitive the ear is to various frequencies.
All of this is recorded on an audiogram.
Hearing Aid Evaluation
Advances in Technology:
The open platform design of today’s Hearing aids allows us to fit the “person” not just the ‘hearing loss’. The individual’s ‘lifestyle ‘should be taken into account. For example a person who has a sedentary lifestyle would not need the same technology as a person who is exposed to many different listening situations
Trial Use of the Aid:
A hearing aid evaluation should include a trial period. Simply listening to someone speak in the office is not an adequate representation of how well one would do in the real world. During this trial period you should try to visit as many places as possible to fully challenge the aids.
Although technology has improved tremendously, hearing aids cannot restore hearing to normal, nor will they allow you to hear everything you want to hear. There will always be situations that are challenging just as there are for normal hearing listeners. Your audiologist should help you understand how the aids will function in different listening environments.
Hearing Aid Fitting
A hearing aid is a device that simply makes the sounds around the wearer louder so that he/she can use what residual hearing is left much more efficiently. The newer digital hearing aids have features that allow for suppression of background noise, remote connection to Blue-Tooth and wireless technology. Although these technological advances are available, they are not perfect by any means. It doesn’t matter how good the device is there will always be some situations or some environment that continues to be challenging for the listener.
Although we represent many different hearing aid manufacturers, Phonak, Siemens, Oticon, Widex, Amplisound, etc., we have our favorites. GN ReSound has, for the past 20 (+) years set the standards for the industry. The most recent advancement is in wireless technology, while other manufactures use the older 900 bandwidth, ReSound uses a 2.4 gig bandwidth allowing them to develop apps for both Apple and Android products.
Videonystagmography is the most common test for dizziness. The procedure records eye movements individually under two different conditions (with the patient following a target and with the patient in the dark). These recordings give us insight into how well the inner ear vestibular system is working and what type of treatment would be most beneficial. The test usually takes about 30 to 45 minutes to complete and the patient may experience some mild dizziness during the examination.