If you strain to hear soft voices or high-pitched voices, or you develop any hearing problem, it’s time to schedule a hearing test. At Desert Cities Allergy & Otolaryngology, Majid Torabi, MD, FACS, and Ryan Salvador, MD, offer comprehensive hearing evaluations and then recommend personalized solutions to improve your hearing and protect you from further hearing damage. To schedule hearing tests, call the office in Rancho Mirage or La Quinta, California, or use the online booking feature today.
Infants and children get regular hearing screenings during their well-child visits and every few years once they’re in school. These screenings are pass-fail tests that quickly detect potential hearing problems. When there is a problem, the school notifies parents and recommends a complete hearing evaluation.
Adults with normal hearing should have a baseline hearing test in their early twenties. This test verifies they don’t have a hearing problem and establishes their hearing ability in young adulthood.
Then adults should have a hearing test every 10 years until they’re 50. After you reach 50, you should schedule an evaluation every three years or any time you notice a change in your hearing.
This schedule changes for people who have a hearing problem or hearing loss. Desert Cities Allergy & Otolaryngology can recommend when to schedule follow-up evaluations after the team finishes your initial test.
Your hearing test begins with a physical examination of your outer ear, ear canal, and eardrum. Then your provider performs a hearing test or audiological evaluation.
Hearing tests typically begin with pure tone and speech testing. Depending on the results, you may need one or more additional tests:
This test determines the quietest sounds you can hear.
During a speech test, your provider learns how well you hear spoken words.
A tuning fork test helps identify the type of hearing loss.
This specialized test measures eardrum movement.
Your provider does this test to assess communication between the ear and brain.
This tests how your middle ear responds to loud noises.
You get an otoacoustic emissions test when your provider wants to evaluate the sensory cells that turn sound waves into nerve signals.
The next step depends on the type and extent of your hearing loss. One type of hearing loss, called conductive hearing loss, occurs when you have a problem in your ear that blocks sound waves.
For example, impacted earwax, fluid in your middle ear, and ear infections can cause conductive hearing loss. If you have this problem, your hearing should improve when your provider treats the problem.
If you have sensorineural hearing loss, the structures needed for hearing, such as the auditory nerve and sensory cells, have permanent damage. The top causes of sensorineural hearing loss include:
This type of hearing loss is treated with a hearing aid or custom-made earmolds to protect your ears from ongoing exposure to loud sounds.
If you have questions about your hearing or need to schedule a hearing test, call Desert Cities Allergy & Otolaryngology or use the online booking feature today.