3 Ways to Prepare for a Hearing Test
You may have noticed a decline in your hearing in recent years, or perhaps your family has asked you to have your hearing checked. Whatever the reason, you have determined it’s time for a hearing test. The exam consists of a few simple painless tests and evaluates how you hear sound volume and frequency. Preparing for a hearing test is easy – consider what questions you may want to ask, and consider how you will deal with the results.
1. Take care of yourself
There’s not too much to do in advance of a hearing test. If you have a cold or the flu, it’s best to reschedule the test for when you feel better because excess mucus in your ears can affect the results. Also, you will want to avoid exposure to loud noises in the day before your exam. For example, don’t attend a rock concert the night before your appointment. Finally, you should clear your outer ears of any wax (never use a cotton swab in your ear canal to clean it). Your hearing care provider will perform a physical exam, checking your ear canal and eardrum for any problems including wax impaction, irritation, or fluid build-up.
2. Write it down
Sometimes in nervous situations it’s difficult to remember questions you may have or some necessary information. Prior to your appointment, take notes. Write down any symptoms you have, how long you’ve had them, and when you notice them most. Bring along your medical history and note when and where you’ve experienced prolonged exposure to loud noises (especially in the workplace). List any medications you take. Prepare a list of questions you have about hearing loss and/or the exam, such as: How will you evaluate my hearing? When will we discuss the results? Will I need hearing aids?
3. Consider the outcomes
While age is the greatest factor in hearing loss, it sometimes is caused by a wax impaction or blockage in the ear canal or may be a side effect of some medications. If you suspect your hearing loss is age-related, take some time to consider treatment options, which most likely means hearing aids.
If you’ve made the appointment for a hearing test, you’ve likely considered the possibility that hearing aids will be of benefit. Today’s hearing aids do more than just amplify sound and provide a better quality of life for those with hearing loss. Your hearing specialist will work with you to determine the best hearing aids for your type of hearing loss and your budget.
Preparing for a hearing test is easy – the exam itself is painless and takes about an hour or so. Having a friend along often helps with any anxiety you may have about the appointment. Remember, you’re there to solve a problem. If the solution is hearing aids, there’s a large selection of styles that fit any budget and improve your hearing health.