Congratulations on making an appointment with a hearing care provider!
This is an important step in your hearing health journey – but fortunately an easy one. Did you know that most haircuts last longer than a hearing evaluation? It’s true! If you’re a bit anxious or concerned about your appointment, check out the following tips to help you go in feeling more prepared and confident. (And remember, you’ve already done the hard part.)
One: Think about what you need and want
What do you want to get out of this appointment, besides overall improved hearing? Are there specific sounds that you’re missing? Trouble hearing certain conversations, or do you need hearing help at work? At school? Are you experiencing tinnitus symptoms? Consider writing down a list of situations where you seem to struggle with your hearing the most. Understanding your personal needs and hearing goals will help your hearing care provider fit you with a hearing aid that works best for you.
Two: Avoid loud noises
This is advice you should take every day. However, it’s especially important right before you take a hearing test. Exposure to overly loud noises before a hearing evaluation can throw off the results of your test, as these effects can last for hours after the event. So avoid going to that concert, fireworks display, racetrack, or any other loud affair until after your test – and when you do, remember to wear the proper protection.
Three: Watch out for earwax
Although earwax is part of every healthy ear, an unhealthy amount of wax buildup can interfere with your hearing and your ability to get an accurate test. Never try to remove earwax yourself, especially with any sort of pointy object, candling, or cotton swabs. These types of home remedies can result in permanent damage to your ears and hearing. Speak to your doctor or ENT for advice first, as they can prescribe drops or use a gentle irrigation procedure to remove the wax buildup.
Four: Bring your medical history
Make a list of your medications and medical history. Your hearing care provider may allow you to fill out intake forms in advance – check their website or call the office to find out. Otherwise, ensure you bring this information with you to your appointment. Certain medications can cause hearing loss, and your hearing care provider should know your full medical picture. If you have changed medications since your last appointment, ensure you let your provider know.
Five: Bring a buddy
Take a trusted family member or friend along with you to your appointment. Sometimes it’s difficult to remember everything while the hearing care provider is testing your hearing and asking questions. Having a friend on hand to take notes or ask follow-up questions on your behalf can be invaluable. They can also pick up on details you might miss, and help you weigh the pros and cons of various hearing solutions.
Again, congratulations on beginning your journey toward good hearing health. Next, find out what to expect when you get to your hearing care provider’s office. Still looking for a hearing care provider? You can find one with our simple hearing clinic locator tool.