Helping Seniors Understand Hearing Tests

Home Care in Lodi CAOur bodies change as we age, and hearing loss is one condition that many seniors deal with on a regular basis. Nearly half of adults over 75 have hearing difficulties, and one in three between the ages of 65 and 74 experience hearing loss, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). Early detection and treatment of hearing loss are essential for preserving general health and quality of life. A hearing test is one of the crucial steps in this process. However, seniors might refrain from going to see the doctor for this hearing test for multiple reasons. This is where home care can assist, helping seniors understand the importance of these tests and even transporting them to their appointments.

Why Are Senior Hearing Tests Important?

Seniors who suffer from hearing loss may find it difficult to maintain their safety, participate in social activities, and communicate clearly. Cognitive decline, depression, and social isolation are just a few of the health problems that have been associated with untreated hearing loss. Seniors can potentially lessen the impact of hearing loss on their lives by getting regular hearing tests, which can help detect hearing loss early and take proactive measures to address it.

What Should Seniors Expect During a Hearing Test?

While each situation may differ, there are a few things that home care can share with seniors about hearing tests that may help them feel more comfortable with the process.

  • Questions About Medical History: Seniors should be prepared to answer questions about their medical history, including any signs of hearing loss, loud noise exposure, and any family history of hearing issues. This information points to potential causes of hearing loss and dictates what assessments might be needed.
  • Physical Examination: While not like a typical physical examination at their family doctor, seniors should be prepared for the audiologist to perform a physical examination of their ears. This is done to look for any obvious anomalies or indications of infection that might be causing hearing loss.

What Assessments Might Occur?

The main part of a hearing test is audiometric testing, which evaluates the senior’s hearing capacity at different loudness and frequency ranges. Typically, this is carried out in a soundproof booth to reduce interference from outside noise. Typical audiometric evaluations consist of:

  • Pure Tones Audiometry: In order to pass this test, seniors must wear headphones and respond to various frequency tones by indicating when they hear them.
  • Speech Audiometry: This part of the assessment checks the senior’s hearing and comprehension of speech at various volume levels.
  • Bone Conduction Test: This evaluates inner ear sensitivity by sending sounds through the skull’s bones.
  • Speech Recognition Testing: It is possible to administer speech recognition testing in addition to pure-tone audiometry to assess a senior’s comprehension of spoken language in noisy settings, which can be especially difficult for those who have hearing loss.
  • Tympanometry: This test measures how the eardrum moves and how well the middle ear is functioning. It can assist in locating issues like fluid accumulation or eardrum perforations.

Understanding the Results

Following the completion of the hearing tests, the hearing team will assess the results. The degree and pattern of any hearing loss will be displayed on the senior’s audiogram, a graphical depiction of their hearing abilities. These findings will inform the appropriate recommendations and interventions.

For seniors to maintain the best possible hearing health and general well-being, regular hearing tests are imperative. Home care and loved ones can explain the importance of these tests and what they entail to ensure seniors feel comfortable.

If you or an aging loved one is considering Home Care in Lodi, CA, please contact the caring staff at Aging Assistant today at (916) 897-4752