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Hearing Loss

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How we hear?
Fakta & Gambaran
Penyebab dan tipe-tipe gangguan pendengaran
Are you suspecting your child has a hearing loss?

Penelitian (Maastricht report on hearing impairment, 1999) juga menekankan fakta bahwa hanya sebagian kecil 'kurang dari 14% di Eropa' dari mereka menggunakan alat bantu dengar yang akan bermanfaat hanya menggunakan satu telinga.

Derajat gangguan pendegaran berbeda antara satu orang dengan yang lainnya

Di antara dua perbedaan yang besar dari pendengaran normal dan sama sekali tidak mendengar, ada beberapa derajat gangguan pendengaran. Istilah untuk menggambarkan gangguan pendengaran adalah ringan, sedang, berat dan sangat berat. Sebagian besar gangguan pendengaran adalah ringan sampai sedang.

Apa yang dimaksud derajat gangguan pendengaran?

  • Gangguan pendengaran ringan: tidak dapat mendengar suara lembut, kesulitan memahami pembicaraan secara jelas di lingkungan bising.
  • Gangguan pendengaran sedang: tidak dapat mendengar suara lembut dan kekerasan sedang, sangat sulit memahami pembicaraan, terutama di lingkungan yang bising.
  • Gangguan pendengaran berat: beberapa suara keras memang terdengar tapi komunikasi tanpa alat Bantu dengar adalah mustahil.
  • Gangguan pendengaran sangat berat: beberapa suara sangat keras memang terdengar tapi komunikasi tanpa alat Bantu Dengar adalah mustahil.

A human ear with normal hearing can detect a very wide range of frequencies from 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. The standard hearing test concentrates only on the range of frequencies relevant for understanding speech: 250 Hz to 8000 Hz.

A hearingcare professional tests hearing in a quiet test environment with a specially calibrated audiometer, using specific procedures. Each ear is tested separately since the extent of any damage may be different in each ear.

The hearing range of the test ear is compared to the normal hearing range. The key observations for the different frequencies are "at what level do I begin to hear the sound " and "at what level does the sound become uncomfortably loud". The result is presented in the form of an audiogram.

The hearingcare professional can explain the meaning of the results and the effect of a particular loss on everyday life and communication, and provide information and guidance on the decision concerning hearing instruments.

Hearing Tests for Children

  • Hearing Screening
    This is testing which can be carried out at any age. Hearing screening usually shows simply that a child's hearing is not at a normal level. If a child fails a screening test, he she will be referred for a more detailed assessment. In recent years the importance of hearing screening for infants has been recognized. There is now legislation in many countries recommending that all newborns are screened for hearing loss. When hearing loss is identified early appropriate support measures also can begin sooner.

  • Behavioral Hearing Tests
    These tests usually require the child to respond to soft sounds in some way (verbally, by picture pointing, raising the hand or through a "game"). These tests can be fun and for infants and toddlers, a head-turn response to a test signal is usually the best and most reliable testing method.

  • Auditory Brainstem Response
    For newborns or infants and children who cannot reliably perform the behavioral test procedures, other more objective tests, such as Auditory Brainstem Response, can help determine hearing abilities. Clicks or tonal "pips" are sounded in an infant's ears through earphones. The ABR provides information about the function of the auditory pathway to the level of the brainstem. The response to the clicks or tones are recorded, providing an estimate of hearing sensitivity.

  • Otoacoustic Emissions
    These tests provide a unique way to examine the function of the cochlea. Sounds are sent to the child's ear with a small loudspeaker. A microphone records the response to the sound from the cochlea (known as an emission). This offers valuable information about the sensory hair cells in the cochlea.

  • Tympanometry (Acoustic Immittance Testing)
    This test helps determine how well the eardrum and middle ear are working. A gentle puff of air is delivered into the child's ear and the amount the eardrum moves in response to change in air pressure is recorded. If the eardrum does not move, for example, it could mean there is fluid behind the eardrum and otitis media with effusion may be present.



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