If you have noticed that you have you aren’t hearing as well as you once used to, it’s important to speak to an audiologist to preserve the rest of your hearing ability. Being able to hear clearly is important to your day-to-day activities, whether you’re having coffee with a friend or listening to a presentation at work.

It’s normal to feel anxious about an appointment with a new medical professional, but the best thing about meeting your new audiologist is that you’ll be put at ease from the start of the appointment. You are there to be heard, and your audiologist will listen to your concerns and help you to resolve the issue.

What does an audiologist do?

An audiologist is a highly trained professional who can evaluate, diagnose and treat your hearing issues. They have been trained beyond medical school to specialize in hearing and issues surrounding the ear. They can also deal with tinnitus and balance disorders as part of their skillset. Every audiologist has to have an advanced degree, which requires years of schooling and hours of training.

When you visit the audiologist, you will see that they use a variety of tests and procedures to check your hearing and assess any balance issues that you may be having. There are also some audiologists out there who can dispense and fit hearing devices to help you to hear better. Let’s look at some things that you should expect to happen at your appointment with the audiologist:

Information gathering

When you visit an audiologist, you need to talk through why you’re there. As part of the appointment, they’ll talk through your medical history, any past issues and any family history of deafness that may be relevant. They will also want to talk through your hobbies and lifestyle to work out whether these are having an effect on your hearing.

Physical examination

To start with, your audiologist will examine your outer ear. This is going to help them to ascertain the health of your exterior ear structure to ensure no deformities or issues that you may not be aware that you have. They’ll also check for infection and abnormalities.

Once the external exam is done, your audiologist will then get an otoscope and take a look into the ear itself. This will magnify and highlight the interior of the ear canal and eardrum to check their health and their structure. They’ll be looking for any trauma, too, while checking for infection and debris build-up. Seeing as earwax can have a large effect on whether you can hear. They’ll be able to see everything occluding the ear canal and be able to make space so that you no longer have a blockage. 

A hearing test

Your audiologist will also perform a hearing test to see how healthy your hearing really is. There are a few different hearing tests that they may complete with you, and these will all help your audiologist to determine not only how profound your hearing loss is, but why you have lost your hearing. Don’t worry! Hearing tests are non-invasive and do not cause any discomfort. Your audiologist will be happy to walk you through the instructions of each step to ensure you fully understand what you need to do, whether it’s raising a hand or pushing a button.

Discussing your results

Once you’ve had your hearing tests, you’ll sit together and evaluate your audiogram. This is where all your hearing test results will be plotted to determine your hearing health. It’s an important factor in ensuring your diagnosis is secure. Once you can see what pitches and volumes you are struggling with, you’ll be able to get your treatment plan.

The most common result of lost hearing is a treatment plan involving hearing aids. Your audiologist is the expert here, but they will be able to talk you through the many different hearing aid types that are out there that will help you to hear almost normally once more. The hearing aids you will be recommended all depend on the level of hearing loss that you are coping with, but they’ll be able to talk you through how to take care of them properly. You’ll also get a crash course on keeping them clean. 

Learn more today

In order to learn more about what you can expect at an appointment with an audiologist, give our team a call today at Clifton Springs Hearing Center. Our phone number is 315-496-4314 and we would be more than happy to help.