Hearing tests to diagnose hearing loss and the cause will most likely begin with your doctor. Hearing tests may include physical ear exams, general screening tests, tuning fork tests and audiometric evaluations.
During an exam, your doctor will look in the ear for any causes of hearing loss such as inflammation or impacted earwax. Your doctor will also be able to see any visible damage or structural problems in the ear that may be the cause of hearing loss.
A general screening hearing test will show your doctor or specialist how well you hear words and sounds at various volumes. It will also identify a need for further testing.
Another way to test your hearing ability are tuning forks. They are metal instruments that produce sound when struck to gauge your hearing ability for sound levels and frequencies. They can also test for damage to the vibrating parts of your middle ear or damage to the sensors and nerves in your ear.
An audiometric evaluation is a more advanced hearing test that is done by an oto-technician or an audiologist. You will be asked to respond to sounds, pitches and frequencies directed to one ear at a time through headphones. Your responses produce an audiogram, a chart that compares your hearing range to normal range.