Hearing loss affects millions of people worldwide and has a significant impact on one’s quality of life. Audiologists are professionals trained to diagnose and treat hearing loss. Diagnosing hearing loss is a hearing test. During a hearing test, an audiologist will evaluate the patient’s ability to hear sounds at frequencies and volumes type of hearing test is called pure-tone audiometry patient listens to tones played through headphones or speakers and responds when they hear them.
A hearing test is speech audiometry; the patient’s ability to understand spoken words at volumes test is especially useful for determining how well someone understands speech in noisy environments. Audiologists may perform additional tests to identify the underlying cause of hearing loss determining the extent and nature of the hearing. Blood tests and other diagnostic procedures are also part of these tests.
- Hearing aids amplify sounds so that they are easier for people to hearing aids are available in many types, including behind-the-ear models, and completely-in-canal models cochlear implants are surgically implanted into the inner ear, bypassing damaged hair cells in the cochlea and stimulate the auditory nerve directly.
- Assistive listening devices are another option for people with mild to moderate hearing loss who do not want or need a full-time solution like a hearing aid. ALDs include devices like amplified telephones, personal amplifiers that are worn around the neck, or clipped onto clothing alerting systems that use flashing lights or vibrations instead of sound to signal alarms or notifications. audiologist also work with patients to develop communication strategies for them to communicate with others despite their hearing loss strategies include things like speaking face-to-face instead of from behind someone’s back or asking others to speak more slowly and clearly.
- Audiologists in hospitals treat patients with hearing loss caused by medical conditions such as diabetes and infections private practices treat patients’ hearing caused by exposure to loud noises or aging problems with their speech or swallowing and patients who have been diagnosed with conditions such as autism or cerebral palsy work with patients who have problems with movement due to injuries, illnesses, or disabilities.
Surgical procedures may be necessary to correct underlying causes of hearing loss such as tumors or infections may involve removing blockages from the ear canal or repairing damage to structures within the ear. While there is no guaranteed way to prevent all types of hearing loss from occurring, exposure to loud noises over time damages your ears’ delicate hair cells and leads to permanent damage.