Our hearing ability allows us to communicate normally. To know exactly the state of our ear there is a measurement test: audiometry.
The medical specialty that studies hearing is otolaryngology
The hearing health test consists of two parts: audiometry, which measures a patient’s hearing capacity, and, on the other hand, tympanometry, a test that measures pressure and mobility in the middle ear. When a person has hearing problems, the middle ear or auditory nerve usually fails.
The simple version of audiometry is known as “scanning” and for some patients there is a more sophisticated version of measurement tests performed in specially soundproof booths. Anyway, the patient put headphones in his ears. In this way, the patient hears different volumes at different sound frequencies.
When the patient identifies a type of sound (low or high) they have to raise a hand to communicate what has been detected. This exam is of short duration, usually about five minutes. First, the capacity of one ear is measured and then the other.
Audiometry in children
Audiometry is an exam that can be performed in adults and children. However, performing this test is not always easy for children under the age of five. For this reason, experts recommend an initial subjective hearing screening and analyzing the child’s behavior in relation to their auditory stimuli. In this type of exploration, it is important for the specialist physician to establish an empathetic relationship with the child.
The results of an audiometry are recorded on an audiogram
The audiograms show the frequencies of sounds in a horizontal line, which are measured in hertz, more specifically 125 for the lowest sounds up to 8000 hertz for the highest sounds. On the vertical part of the scale are the decibels, which range between 0 and 120. Normal hearing is between 10 and 20 decibels.
Audiograms express through a graph the quality of hearing and what kind of sound is heard or not. From this measurement, the different types of deafness can be defined. The audiogram represents in color the precise hearing of each ear. With this information it is possible to find a solution that allows normal listening.