Test your hearing from home: Take an online hearing test with headphones

We’ve become accustomed to the convenience of doing almost anything from the comfort of our homes today – shopping, working, learning, you name it. 

But what about testing your hearing? Yes, you’ve read that right. You can now test your hearing online, with nothing but a pair of headphones and a pinch of patience. 

Gone are the days of booking appointments and sitting in sterile clinics just to find out if you’re selectively ignoring your partner or genuinely can’t hear them.

Why take an online hearing test?

Before we dive into the how, let’s talk about the why. Hearing is one of those senses that we often take for granted until it starts to wane. 

And for some reason, it carries a bit of an ego issue; no one wants to admit they might be losing it. 

An online hearing test with headphones offers a discreet, immediate, and comfortable way to check where your hearing stands, all without having to admit to anyone (including yourself) that you turned the TV volume up to max last night.

The benefits:

  • Convenience: Check your hearing while in your pajamas, at 2 AM, if that’s what floats your boat.
  • Privacy: No one needs to know, not even the cat.
  • Immediate Results: Instant gratification for the curious minds.

Now, before you run off to find the first online hearing test your Google search spits back at you, there are a few things you need to know.

How to take an online hearing test

First, grab a pair of good-quality headphones. The ones you found in your junk drawer from 2005 won’t cut it. 

You’ll need something that covers your ears well and can handle a range of frequencies without distorting them like a funhouse mirror.

Next, find a quiet environment. This means turning off any background music, TV, or the fan that’s been whirring in the background since the last heatwave. You want your room to be as silent as a mime’s meditation retreat.

Here are the steps to ensure you get the most accurate results:

  1. Choose a Reputable Test: Look for online hearing tests backed by known hearing health organizations or audiology clinics.
  2. Set Your Headphones Correctly: Make sure they’re snug, comfortable, and each earpiece is on the correct ear. Yes, they’re labeled for a reason.
  3. Calibrate: Some tests will have a calibration step to adjust to your headphones’ specific sound profile. Don’t skip this part.
  4. Follow Instructions Carefully: This isn’t the time to wing it. If the test asks you to adjust your volume until you can barely hear a tone, resist the urge to crank it up to concert levels.
  5. Take Notes: If the test allows, jot down your results or take a screenshot for future reference.

What to expect during the test

  • Tones of Varying Volumes and Frequencies: You’ll be asked to indicate when you can hear these. It’s like a game, but you can’t cheat by peeking.
  • Speech in Noise: Some tests include listening to spoken words with background noise. It’s like trying to listen to your friend gossip about their love life in a crowded café.

After the test

Don’t panic if your test suggests a hearing loss. 

Online tests are not diagnostic tools but can indicate if you should seek further evaluation from a professional. Think of it as a nudge to take care of your ears, not a final verdict.

If you have concerns:

  • Consult an Audiologist: They’re like detectives for your ears and can give you a comprehensive assessment.
  • Protect Your Hearing: Whether it’s turning down the volume, wearing ear protection in noisy environments, or giving your ears a break, every little bit helps.

Taking an online hearing test is a great first step in acknowledging and addressing your hearing health. It’s easy, convenient, and can be done from anywhere you feel comfortable. Remember, it’s about staying informed and proactive about your well-being.