Hearing Associates of Libertyville, IL

Image of woman getting hearing test with the results superimposed.

Important information about your state of health is offered by a hearing test. Hearing tests can potentially detect other health concerns because the ears are so sensitive. What will a hearing examination tell you about your health.

A Hearing Exam, What is it?

There are a variety of kinds of hearing tests, but the common evaluation involves putting on headphones and listening to a series of sounds. The hearing professional will play these sounds at various volumes and pitch levels to figure out if you have hearing loss, and if so the severity of the loss.

So that you can make sure you hear sounds correctly, another hearing test plays words in one ear and you will repeat them back. At times, this test is purposely done with background sound to find out whether that affects your hearing. Tests are usually done in each ear individually to get a proper measurement for each side.

What is The Meaning of Hearing Test Results?

Whether someone has loss of hearing, 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. Using this test expert can find out if the hearing loss is:

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

The decibel level of the hearing loss defines the level of impairment.

Do Hearing Tests Evaluate Anything Else?

Other hearing tests can evaluate the thresholds of air and bone conduction, viability of the structures in the middle ear like the eardrum, type of hearing loss, and a person’s ability to hear clearly when background noise is present.

But hearing exams can also uncover other health issues including:

  • And, Otosclerosis, which if caught early enough, has the possibility of being reversed.
  • Extreme headaches and pain in the joints caused by Paget’s disease.
  • Heart and circulation problems. The inner ear has one blood vessel, and that makes it more susceptible to alterations in blood pressure and cholesterol.
  • Dizziness, vertigo, and other issues related to Meniere’s disease.
  • Diabetes. It’s thought that too much sugar in the blood can harm blood vessels including the one that goes to the inner ear.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis. Studies show that people with RA are as much as 300 percent more likely to have hearing loss.

The information from the hearing exam can be used by the expert to figure out if you have the following:

  • Damage from trauma
  • Damage from chronic infections or disease
  • Abnormal bone growths
  • Damage caused by exposure to ototoxic chemicals or medications, loud noises
  • Tumors
  • Another medical problem causing the hearing loss like high blood pressure
  • Age related hearing loss

When you discover why you have hearing loss, you can look for ways to manage it and to take care of your general health.

A preemptive strategy to minimize the risks caused by hearing loss will be put together by the specialist after evaluating the results of the test.

What Are The Risk Factors of Neglecting Hearing Loss?

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

According to this study, a person with mild hearing loss has twice the risk of dementia. Three times the risk comes with moderate loss of hearing and five times the risk with severe loss of hearing.

There is evidence of social decline with loss of hearing, as well. People will stay away from discussions if they have trouble following them. That can lead to more alone time and less time with family and friends.

A hearing test may clarify a recent bout of fatigue, also. The brain works to translate sound, so you can comprehend what you hear. It has to work harder to perceive and interpret sound when there is loss of hearing. Your left always feeling tired because your other senses are robbed of energy.

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

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

A professional hearing test is a painless and safe way to find out a lot about your hearing and your health, so why are you waiting to schedule your appointment?

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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