A range of different techniques is used to detect hearing problems. ENT specialists mainly recommend fully automated hearing tests for children, as they may fail to comply with the requirements of conventional tests.
Automated otoacoustic emissions (AOAE) test measures the response of the ear to small clicking noises with the help of a computer. Automated auditory brainstem response (AABR) test checks the response of nerves to sound signals with the help of sensors placed on the neck and head.
Play audiometry hearing test procedure is also designed especially for children. The child is directed to perform an activity after receiving sounds at different volumes and frequencies.
Other tests like pure tone audiometry, speech perception, and tympanometry can be used to test adults and well as children.
Pure tone audiometry tests the hearing of both ears by a machine that emits sounds at various frequencies and records the patient's response.
Bone conduction test is usually carried out as part of a pure tone audiometry to determine whether hearing loss comes from the outer and middle ear, the inner ear, or both.
Tympanometry is used to check for accumulation of fluid behind the eardrum and functioning of the Eustachian tube.
Simple tests like speech recognition, Whispered voice test, Tuning fork test is carried out as the first line of diagnosis for establishing hearing impairment. The duration of each of the above tests may vary depending on the severity of the condition and age of the person.
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