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People tend to view hearing loss as a medical problem. As such, physicians represent an important source of information, inspiration, guidance and hope for people with hearing issues. When physicians screen hearing during health exams, they can determine if hearing loss exists and counsel patients on how to best treat the problem including follow up with a qualified audiologist. At present, surveys suggest 6% of physicians in the U.S. routinely screen hearing because of a limitation of time. We find that a physicians' greater awareness of both the physical and psychological effects of hearing loss can help their patients enjoy life more fully.
For more information on physician awareness go to the Better Hearing Institute website.
An audiogram is a picture of one's hearing. Results (thresholds) are recorded on the audiogram. The softest sound detected at each pitch (frequency) is recorded on the audiogram (see the audiogram below).
Pitch (or frequency) is situated along the top. As a reference, 250Hertz (Hz) is about "middle C" on the piano." 500Hz is one octave above middle C. 1000Hz is two octaves about C, 2000Hz three octaves, and so on.
Loudness or intensity is located on the left side with 0 decibels (dB) representing very quiet sound and 120dB, representing an extremely loud sound to a person with normal hearing.
The audiogram on the left demonstrates the different degrees of hearing loss and how they are interpreted in terms of disability.