The Hearing Test Explained


It’s thought that two in every ten adults in the UK experience hearing loss. There are many easily detectable signs to identify this.


  • Thinking other people are mumbling and not speaking clearly
  • Finding it hard to follow conversations in crowded situations
  • People complaining that you have the television too loud


Just like our eyesight, hearing has its own natural ageing process. The majority of people experience gradual hearing loss through the course of life. New digital hearing aid technology, however, can manage that hearing loss in 95% of cases and help you regain your hearing allowing you to enjoy the quality of life you deserve.

Stage 1 - The Initial Assessment 

Your appointment will last between 1 to 1.5 hours. Firstly I will discuss your hearing with you, I may ask questions about your lifestyle and health. This will help me understand the possible causes of any hearing problems. The consultation structure is normally:

  • Examination of the ear and auditory canal
  • Full audiometric hearing assessment
  • Explanation and discussion of the outcome
  • Impartial advice on the most suited hearing system for your individual requirements 


Case History

I will ask you a few questions about your hearing and general health.

Examination of the Ear

Checking the ear canal

I will examine the outside of your ears first, then I will look in your ears with a light checking the health of your ear canal and eardrum.


I will measure what are the faintest sounds you can hear in a quiet environment through headphones. You will have to press a button or raise your hand every time you hear a beep or tone. The sounds start off louder and decrease gradually until they are very faint. This will tell me if your hearing is within the normal range or in the case of a hearing loss, what type and what level of hearing loss is present.

The audiometric procedure involves the following tests;

Pure tone testing (Audiometry)
Speech testing (Audiometry)

Audiometry ( Hearing Test)

Audiometry hearing test

This group of tests is plotted on an audiogram which shows your hearing sensitivity. It answers the question of whether or not your hearing sensitivity is within the normal range, or if there is a hearing loss. The test results are also used as a tool to reveal any asymmetry (hearing sensitivity that is not equal between the two ears). The audiometric configuration (the “shape” of the thresholds) and the rest of the group of tests also give me information toward a diagnosis of ear abnormalities. 

How it is performed

This battery of tests involves carefully listening through headphones that are placed over the ears or insert earphones that are placed in the ear canals. Next, pure tones will be presented through the headphones or insert earphones, as well as through a bone conduction vibrator on a headband that is placed behind the ear. You will listen for the softest level you can detect, and will push a button or raise your hand in response. This will determine your hearing thresholds.

Additional tests may be added to the group of tests if asymmetry of thresholds is found, or if you have tinnitus or dizziness.

Speech Testing

Words will be presented at a comfortable listening level and you will have to repeat them. This test gives me further information on the status of your inner ear function. It can help diagnose nerve damage/deterioration and is a good indicator of the possible benefit from a hearing aid. This group of tests is plotted on my system which allows me to assess the impact that your hearing loss is having on your understanding of speech sounds. The test results are used as a tool to reveal exactly how your loss is effecting your understanding of speech in both quiet and noisy situations. This test and the rest of the group of tests also give me information toward a diagnosis of ear abnormalities. This test is also an excellent tool for assisting me in the recommendation of suitable hearing aids because it allows me to define the sounds in speech that you have the most difficulty with.

How it is performed

During these tests, you will be asked to repeat words that are presented to you at normal speech volume levels. Word recognition scores will be determined when you repeat words that are presented at this normal listening level. 

Hearing Aid Benefit Assessment

If you are a suitable candidate for hearing aids, I will then move onto a hearing aid benefit assessment. During this test, I use my fitting suite to fit a set of suitable hearing aids to your defined loss. This will allow me to test if you will benefit from hearing aids, it will also allow you to begin to understand the benefits.

Stage 2 - Fitting of your hearing system

Depending upon your choices I may then schedule a second appointment which would be where I fit your hearing instruments, this will include: 

  • Fitting of your hearing instruments
  • Programming of the hearing aids to suit your requirements and lifestyle activities 
  • I will make sure that you are comfortable with the settings and how to use your hearing system and any accessories 
  • Demonstrate in real-life situations to see how your new hearing system feels so I can make adjustments to get this correct for you 

Stage 3 - Follow up 

After the fitting of your new hearing system I will see you again to discuss your progress, where I can;

  • If required carry out any adjustments to suit your needs
  • Then go through in detail your experience and make any minor adjustments if necessary, allowing you to get the most out of your new hearing system

NB. It's a good idea to take notes of situations you found really good but also importantly situations where you think there may be an adjustment needed.

Audiological Rehabilitation - I will help you get used to your new hearing instruments and support you through the process of hearing the sounds that you have been missing out on.

The support doesn't stop there, any further adjustments or advice about your new hearing aids is of course, free of charge.

  • Review appointments when needed
  • Re-tuning of your hearing system when needed
  • Clean and check service 
  • All hearing instruments are brand new and will be covered by a 5-year manufacturers warranty

If at any time you need to see me or need advice on your hearing aids, just call me to make an appointment and I will be happy to help. Getting used to your hearing instruments can take time and I understand this, so this is why I am always happy to see you. This will allow you to get the best from your new hearing system.  My promise to you is to support you right from your hearing assessment through to any reviews and check-ups that are necessary.


Call 01506 420519 to book your consultation now

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