A hearing test is also known as an audiometric test, which is an exam that assesses an individual's ability to listen by measuring how sound reaches the person's brain. Hearing tests help determine the level of injury a person has experienced by measuring their ability to listen to sounds that are sent to the inner ear and through the ear canal, in addition to sounds that are sent through the skull. If you feel you have a hearing problem, you can schedule an appointment at a hearing center to get an evaluation. You should discuss the following topics with your hearing specialist if any are prevalent:

• You have been exposed noise that made your ears ring or any painfully loud noise. You should avoid loud sounds 16 hours prior to your test.

• You are currently taking or have previously taken antibiotics that are known to cause hearing damage.

• You have noticed signs of possible hearing loss or you have problems listening normal conversation.

• You have recently had an ear infection or cold.

The National Institute of Health indicates that some type of listening impairment affects a 3rd of older individuals in America around the ages of 65-85. This can affect how seniors respond and understand conversation. Hearing loss also affects individuals who are younger, and through a series of tests conducted at a hearing, they can find out if you have an injury. If you have experienced loss, the specialist can help you decide on a hearing aid that is right for you.

There are 2 basic types of hearing loss, Sensorineural and Conductive. An individual could also have mixed hearing impairment, meaning they have a little of both types of loss. With sensorineural hearing loss, an individual has a problem with their inner ear's ability to sense energy's sound and effectively communicate the sound to the brain. During conductive hearing loss, a person has a problem with the ability of the middle and / or outer ear to transfer the sound energy to the cochlea (inner ear).

If you believe you or a member of your family has experienced loss, consult with a specialist at a professional hearing center. The hearing specialist will set up a hearing test to evaluate your hearing ability. If your tests indicate that you have hearing loss the specialist will help you decide on a hearing with functions and features that will fit your needs. You can call the hearing center to find out if they offer free cleaning, programming, adjustments, screening and warranties on their listening devices.