Hearing Health Blog

Image of woman getting hearing test with the results superimposed.

Hearing tests supply invaluable insights into your health. Hearing tests can potentially detect other health concerns because the ears are so sensitive. What will you learn from a hearing assessment?

A Hearing Test, What is it?

Out of the many varieties of hearing tests, putting on earphones and listening to a series of sounds is the basic exam. In order to detect the depth of your hearing loss, the hearing professional will play the tones at different volumes and pitches.

In order to make sure you hear sounds accurately, another hearing test plays words in one ear and you will repeat them back. Sometimes, this test is deliberately done with background noise to see whether that affects your ability to hear. In order to get a proper measurement for each side, tests are done on each ear separately.

What do Hearing Test Results Indicate?

Whether somebody has hearing loss, and the extent of it, is what the standard hearing test identifies. Normal hearing in adults with minor loss of hearing is 25 decibels or less. At this point, hearing experts gauge hearing loss as:

  • Moderate to severe
  • Moderate
  • Severe
  • Profound
  • Mild

The degree of damage is based on the decibel level of the hearing loss.

Do Hearing Tests Measure Anything Else?

There are also test that can evaluate the viability of structures of the middle ear such as the eardrum, how well someone hears with background noise, the threshold of air and bone conduction, and the type of hearing loss.

But hearing assessments can also expose other health problems including:

  • Otosclerosis, which if caught early can sometimes be reversed.
  • Heart and circulation issues. The inner ear has one blood vessel, which makes it more sensitive to fluctuations in blood pressure and cholesterol.
  • Extreme headaches and pain in the joints triggered by Paget’s disease.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis. Hearing loss is 300% percent more likely in people with RA..
  • Diabetes. It’s thought that high levels of sugar in the blood can injure blood vessels including the one that goes to the inner ear.
  • Dizziness, vertigo, and other challenges associated with Meniere’s disease.

The hearing expert will take all the information uncovered by hearing tests and use it to figure out whether you have:

  • Unusual bone growths
  • Damage from trauma
  • Injury from chronic infections or disease
  • Hearing loss related to aging
  • Another medical problem like high blood pressure causing hearing loss
  • Damage from exposure to ototoxic chemicals or medications, loud noises
  • Tumors

Once you recognize why you have loss of hearing, you can try to find ways to deal with it and to take care of your general health.

A preemptive plan to reduce the risks caused by loss of hearing will be put together by the professional after looking at the results of the test.

What Are The Risks of Ignoring Hearing Loss?

Medical science is starting to realize how hearing loss impacts a person’s health and quality of life. Researchers from Johns Hopkins kept track of 636 individuals over 12 years. They found that people with loss of hearing have a greater risk of dementia. The more significant the hearing loss, the higher the risk.

Double the risk of dementia comes with moderate loss of hearing, according to this study. A moderate loss means three times the risk, and severe hearing impairment raises the risk by five.

Also, social decline is evident in people with loss of hearing. People will stay away from discussions if they have trouble following them. Less time with friends and family and more time alone can be the outcome.

A hearing test may clarify a recent bout of exhaustion, too. In order to comprehend what you hear, the brain needs to do work. When there is loss of hearing, it will have to work harder to perceive sound and translate it. That robs your other senses of energy and leaves you feeling tired all the time.

Finally, the National Council on Aging reports there is a clear correlation between depression and loss of hearing, specifically, when left untreated, age related loss of hearing.

Treating hearing loss, with hearing aids or other hearing technology, can get rid of or decrease these risks, and a hearing test is the first step for correct treatment.

A painless way to find out about your hearing and your health is a professional hearing test so schedule your appointment today.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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