A hearing is an important component that determines the quality of our life and communication process. An audiologist or and hearing care professional takes the pure tone audiometry(PTA) test to check degree, type, configuration, and level of hearing. Pure tone audiometry hearing test is common because it follows standard norms and device is also not very expensive. It is used to test the hearing of children, adult and also old-aged people and they respond in various ways which include raising finger and hand, pressing a button and saying yes.
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Degrees of hearing loss
Mild Hearing Loss
The people with mild hearing loss can hear are between 25 and 40 dB. Which mean they are unable to hear sounds soft such as a ticking clock. Although it is not difficult for them to follow conversation one-on-one, but are unable to catch words in a noisy environment. Fortunately, it is very easy to overcome the mild hearing loss by using hearing aids which amplify the low sound.
Moderate Hearing Loss
Someone suffering from moderate hearing loss is unable to hear sounds that are below than 40-75 dB. people may unable to hear the doorbell or a telephone. It can also be difficult for people to follow or hear sounds during normal conversations. According to the health of the person, the normal hearing loss can also be improved by using a hearing aid or middle ear implants.
Severe Hearing Loss
The person suffering the severe hearing loss might face difficulty during conversations without wearing a hearing aid. Although a hearing aid can help in most of the cases, they are not that efficient in improving the ability of hearing. Treatments that are helpful in rectifying severe hearing loss is middle ear implants or cochlear implants.
Profound Hearing Loss
This is the most severe hearing loss. People suffering from this degree of hearing loss are unable to hear sounds lower than 90-120 dB. People suffering from profound hearing loss, using a hearing aid is ineffective. Profound hearing loss makes it difficult to even hear loud sounds, such as airplane engines or fire alarms. The best solution to profound hearing loss is a cochlear implant, which is going to help an individual hear and understand speech after surgery.
Facts of pure tone audiometry hearing test:
- In this hearing test, patients or hearing impaired person are sited in a soundproof room and wear headphones and audiologist sit outside and manage audiometric equipment to test hearing.
- A hearing care professional first examine the patient’s ability to hear sounds at different pitches.
- Patients respond to sounds by raising a hand and pressing the button.
- After that conducted a test for air conduction and bone conduction occurs.
- A headphone for air conduction and headbands with an oscillator for bone conduction put behind the ear for testing.
- Then hearing expert and audiologist compare the result of these test to find a problem that causes hearing loss.
- When ear wax and fluid blocks the sound required for hearing, a bone conduction test is performed.
- This test takes between 20 to 25 minutes.