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Online hearing test
Find out how good your hearing is in just three minutes. The online hearing test provides valuable information about your hearing.

Healthy ears ensure a good quality of life, facilitate communication, and strengthen our relationships with others. However, the human ear is the most sensitive organ in the body and it's performance may be affected by overuse, or simply with age. If you think that your hearing may be impaired, we recommend a hearing evaluation. It does not take long, but will give you peace of mind.

Should I have a hearing test?

The first signs of hearing loss usually occur after the age of 50, although children and young adults may also be affected by impaired hearing. After many years of hearing overload, sounds with frequencies in excess of 2,000 to 5,000 Hz are usually the first to be lost. This frequency is barely perceptible to the human ear, and therefore affects only the limits of the speaking range. Consequently, gradual onset hearing loss is typically barely noticed at first, but becomes noticeable only when subsequent signs of hearing loss accumulate. Acknowledging the presence of hearing loss is not always easy, but is the first step towards improving the situation.

The issue is often apparent to partners or other relatives, while those affected continue to think that the situation has remained unchanged.
The sooner the better: This applies to treating hearing loss too. Leaving hearing loss untreated may have serious consequences, leading to depression or dementia, or even to physical impairments. To be on the safe side, many doctors recommend incorporating a hearing test into annual personal health check-ups.

Our 3-minute online hearing test will give you an initial idea of your hearing ability.
 

Self-evaluation questions:

If you or others think that your hearing may have deteriorated, you can easily check it before going to a specialist for a hearing test: If you can hear something being whispered around two meters away, you are probably not experiencing hearing loss.
 
Answering the following questions with either "Yes" or "No" can give you an initial idea of how well you can hear:
Conversation
  • Are speech and sounds loud enough, but unclear?
  • Do you have the feeling that people are mumbling or speaking unintelligibly?
  • Do you often have to ask others to speak more loudly during conversation?
Specific situations
  • Do you have difficulties understanding everything on the telephone?
  • Do you prefer sitting at the front for presentations or at the theater?
  • Do you find it difficult to follow discussions in large groups?
  • Is it even more difficult when there is a lot of background noise?
  • Do you find small talk – or casual chatting – stressful rather than relaxing?
  • Do you no longer look forward to celebrations and events?
Everyday life
  • Do people sometimes ask you why your TV is on so loud?
  • Do you sometimes fail to hear the doorbell or telephone?
  • Do you feel like there are fewer and fewer birds singing outside?
  • As a pedestrian, are you sometimes startled by cars driving past because you have not heard them coming?
  • Do you sometimes or always have noises in your ear, such as tinnitus?
Giving honest answers will provide a more accurate indication of your hearing ability.
 
If you answered "Yes" to more than two questions, you should have your hearing checked by an audiologist or an ENT doctor. Click here to find out more about the role of an audioligist.
Mature woman showing something in shop window to her friend

What happens during a hearing test?

The audiologist first asks you a few questions. For example: Why do you think your hearing is deteriorating? Are you exposed to very loud noises at work? An initial assessment will be made on the basis of your answers. The test itself is performed under laboratory rather than real-life conditions. In day-to-day situations, your hearing is exposed to different and even greater stress. This is taken into account in the assessment.
 
A hearing test generally takes place in a soundproof room or cabin. Sounds with different frequencies are played to you through headphones. These sounds cover the frequency range from 125 to 8,000 Hertz, i.e. from very low to very high. They are played individually in each ear and start very quietly, in a range that cannot be heard, and then slowly increasing in volume. You will be asked to indicate as soon as you first hear the sound. You will usually have to use a button or key.

At the end of the test with the headphones, the same test may be performed with vibrations on the skull.
This is to determine whether there is any damage to the middle ear.
 
Hearing test is evaluated using an audiogram. This shows test sounds on a scale and provides information on the hearing threshold level in decibels. The ENT doctor or audiologist can then determine the frequencies at which there are deviations from normal hearing. This helps not only to diagnose different types of hearing loss, but also to identify a suitable hearing aid. The hearing test is thus not only an important part of the diagnosis, but also a part of the consultation on purchasing a device. At the end, the audiologist will suggest that you test various hearing aids so that you can check individually which model is best for you.
 
Click here for further information on audiograms.
 

Tips to reduce stress

Many people are very anxious at the thought of a hearing test. Firstly, because they do not know what to expect, and secondly because they are worried about the result.

Anxiety may have a negative impact on the results in both cases. How quickly a sound is recognized depends on responsiveness, but also on your condition on the day of the test, for example whether you are well rested, stressed, or tired.

Give yourself plenty of time and try to arrive at the hearing test in a relaxed frame of mind. Ask someone to come with you, to help keep you calm.

Here are a few tips to help you feel less anxious before the test:

  • Listen to an explanation of the procedure while in a quiet setting.
  • Press the button before the start of the test to practice.
  • Ensure that the headphones are well positioned. Remove your glasses if needed, or tuck your hair behind your ears.
  • Try to breathe steadily and sit as comfortably as possible.
  • The speed at which the tone becomes louder can be slowed down. The intervals between the tones can also be increased. Do not be afraid to request a slower pace.
  • Any of the tests can be repeated.

How often should I have a hearing test?

Regular hearing check-ups are important, as hearing loss can occur if your hearing is not trained. We recommend having a hearing test once a year as a precaution. Regular hearing tests can determine whether and how much your hearing has changed. The longer hearing loss remains untreated, the longer it takes for the optimal hearing performance to be restored.

Where should I go for a hearing test?

You can have a hearing test at an ENT specialist clinic of your choice, or with one of our audiologists near you.

How much does a hearing test cost?

The hearing test provided by our audiologists is free of charge, takes only 15 minutes, and gives you peace of mind.

Tips for relatives – How you can help

You can support people with hearing problems by:
  • Finding out about the symptoms that might occur with hearing loss.
  • If you notice signs of hearing problems in a friend or partner, speak to them about it in a quiet moment. Offer to help them with the next steps, or do an online hearing test together.
  • If hearing loss has been identified and a hearing aid has been prescribed, you can support the person in their decision-making about the hearing aid. Doubts may arise in the familiarization phase, so your encouragement can help!
  • Speaking clearly, distinctly, and slowly, face to face, makes it easier for people with hearing loss to understand you. Try to keep this in mind. If the person you are speaking to does not understand, try rephrasing what you said rather than repeating the same words. Patience and understanding are the best ways to help at this time.

Other topics

Hearing Care Professionals
What is an audiogram?
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