If you have never had a hearing test and you think you might need one, check out The National Hearing Test at www.nationalhearingtest.org. If you are an AARP member, you can take the test for free by using the same login you use on the AARP website. If you are not an AARP member the cost is a reasonable $8.
According to the website:
“The National Hearing Test is an accurate, validated hearing screening test, developed with funding from the National Institutes of Health. This confidential screening is taken over a telephone to help you determine if you need a complete hearing evaluation. It has no financial connection with any hearing products/services.”
Use a land line!
The test was set up to be used with a telephone that plugs into the wall. It is best with a phone with a receiver that is attached to the base versus one that is a cordless phone. The land line provides the best sound quality and so give the most accurate results. Cell phones can have weak connections or other distortions that might alter your results.
How does it work?
After logging into the National Hearing Test website with my AARP login, I was sent an access code and an 800 number to call to take the test. The entire call took 11 minutes. The recording asked me to enter the code. It then asked a couple of optional questions. It then explained that I should hold the phone to might right ear and list for 3 numbers that would be spoken to me with white noise in the background. I should enter whatever numbers I thought I heard. If I did not enter anything for 10 seconds it would move on. Some I could hear, some I had to guess at and some I heard no numbers. Then it did the same for my left ear. I thought I had failed on both ears. The results are either Normal, Slightly Below Normal, or Substantially Below Normal.
What Do I Do With The Results?
If your result for either ear was below normal, you should visit an audiologist. They will do a more comprehensive test and let you know about what solutions might help you to hear more clearly.