What to Expect at a Hearing Test

Hearing tests are an essential diagnostic tool that helps us identify any potential hearing loss or complications and determine which types of treatment will be most effective.

Before taking a hearing test, it's beneficial to understand the various stages involved in gauging one's auditory health, from initial screening questions about medical history to more thorough assessments of hearing ability. This helps the process go smoothly and eases any concerns or misconceptions people might have about what actually occurs during testing. Furthermore, our team will be better informed on how to proceed with recommended treatments.

The majority of the testing involves sitting in a soundproof space with headphones on. The subject will be asked to detect a variety of sounds and frequencies and to either raise their hand or press a button to confirm perception.

We may ask you to describe various characteristics of the sounds you heard, such as pitch and volume intensity. The complete testing process takes anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour from start to finish but is different for each person and their individual testing requirements. Though hearing evaluations consist of five main components, not everyone will be subject to each one. Nevertheless, it is helpful to become familiar with all of the stages and what each stage entails.

Medical Health History

During the initial phase of a hearing evaluation, the Hearing Instrument Specialist will ask questions regarding medical background, family history of auditory issues, frequency of exposure to potentially dangerous sound, as well as any ongoing complications with hearing. This is meant to give the specialist a basic understanding of a person's overall hearing health, allowing them to predict and properly interpret the results of subsequent testing stages.


Using an instrument called an otoscope, which provides illumination and magnification, the Hearing Instrument Specialist will inspect the subject's ear canal and search for the presence of blockages, such as built-up fluids and earwax. They will also look for signs of abnormal tissue or bone growth while ensuring that there is no damage to the eardrum. This evaluation helps isolate potential underlying physical causes of hearing loss.


During the tympanometry procedure, a Hearing Instrument Specialist will utilize a probe called a tympanometer, to assess the elasticity of the eardrums by changing the pressure levels within the ear canal while registering its response to a pure-tone audio catalyst. The data points gathered through varying internal ear pressures are illustrated by a tympanogram, which is essentially a line graph indicating the eardrum's performance in relation to the steady sound stimulus. Tympanometries are a more accurate method of detecting fluid in the middle ear and perforations in the eardrum.

Speech Testing

Speech testing is performed in a soundproof room or booth and requires the subject to wear headphones. This test normally involves two parts, one of which is the Speech Recognition Threshold (SRT) assessment, where the volume of words being played through the headphones is gradually decreased until the individual can correctly recount only half the words they hear. The other part of the examination is known as the Word Recognition Test (WRT), which is used to measure a person's ability to identify words emitted at steady, normalized sound levels. The outcomes of these two tests allow Hearing Instrument Specialists to estimate the effectiveness of different treatment options.

Air and Bone Conduction Testing

To get help isolate the underlying root cause of a person's hearing impairment, Hearing Instrument Specialists employ air and bone conduction tests. These are also conducted within the confines of a soundproof space and require the use of headphones. During the air conduction test, the patient is required to signal when they hear various frequencies or tones played through headphones by pressing a button or raising their hand. With the bone conduction test, the subject must wear a specialized headband that generates vibrations that travel directly to the auditory nerve. Reactions to this external stimulation are recorded, and the combined results from both tests enable the Hearing Instrument Specialist to specify whether physical anomalies or auditory nerve damage is responsible for the patient's hearing loss.

Why Choose Us?

Sound Advice is a family-owned and operated business that has been providing top-quality hearing care in Fresno, California, since 2010. We take pride in our individualized approach and our unyielding commitment to customer satisfaction. Our goal is to deliver the most effective and enduring hearing solutions to our clients, taking into account every aspect of their immediate personal requirements and their future aspirations. Furthermore, we are exclusive providers of the Lyric hearing aid, the only extended-wear hearing device available on the market today. We at Sound Advice are proud to say that we have fitted Lyric hearing aids for over ten years and are grateful to have changed the lives of each satisfied customer.

Better hearing shouldn't cost you an arm and a leg.

With Sound Advice, the perfect hearing aids for your hearing needs are within reach!

Come see us today and let our Hearing Instrument Specialists show you how life-changing a flawlessly fitted and reasonably priced hearing device can be - now that is some real "sound advice!"

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