Hearing Health Glossary

From audiogram to tinnitus, find all the terms commonly used for hearing loss and hearing aid technology.

Basic Free Hearing Check

The very first step to better hearing is to get a free basic hearing check to determine your hearing levels. It only takes about 20 minutes. Best of all, it won’t cost you anything. If hearing loss is detected, then we will recommend further assessment with a qualified audiologist to see what you need to do next. The free basic hearing check is available to everyone aged 18 years and over.

Diagnostic Hearing Test

The diagnostic hearing test will determine the type and extent of your hearing loss and find the most suitable options for you. The results are immediate and at this appointment the audiologist will take the time to explain everything in detail, so you feel confident in the knowledge and options available to you.


A hearing test performed by a hearing health care professional comprises a number of tests which can help to determine whether or not a client is suffering from hearing loss. The results from the hearing tests are often displayed in the form of an audiogram, which is a graph that gives a detailed description of your hearing ability by plotting the softest sounds you can hear at a range of different pitches.

Behind-The-Ear (BTE) Hearing Aid

This is the most traditional model: a small, curved case that fits behind the ear with a thin, transparent tube that runs into the ear canal. Newer models are far less visible than previous generation hearing aids. The BTE hearing aid is highly versatile, providing excellent treatment for most forms of hearing loss.

Completely-In-The-Canal (CIC) Hearing Aid

Moulded to fit deep within the ear, CICs are nearly invisible and tend to pick up less external (e.g. wind) noise because they’re protected by the ear itself. See a Bay Audiology clinician to determine if you’re a candidate for this style. Typically appropriate for mild to moderate hearing loss and ears of a size that can accommodate them.

Decibel (dB)

A decibel is a unit used when measuring sound. The decibel (dB) scale is based on the sounds our ears can hear in increasing intensity. A decibel level of 0 is almost complete silence. Experts agree that any noise over 85 decibels can cause hearing loss when exposed for eight hours or more.

Feedback Management

Feedback refers to the distracting whistling or high ringing sound that sometimes happens to hearing aid wearers because amplified sound leaks out from the speaker and gets back into the microphone forming a feedback loop. Feedback management means that a hearing aid is equipped with an advanced system to reduce occurrences of feedback.

Multi programme hearing aid

This simply means that you can control the amplification settings of your hearing aid based on the sounds in your environment. The hearing aid can also store those settings so that you can easily switch between environments such as work, home, and your favourite restaurant, for example, without having to readjust the settings each time. Furthermore, some hearing aids can even learn your preferred settings and switch between programs automatically as you change environments.

Hearing Aid

A hearing aid is a small digital device that sits in or behind the ear and aids an individual who has hearing loss. Hearing aids work by processing and amplifying sounds.

Induction Loop Compatibility

Many public settings, such as theatres, stadiums, and public transport stations, are equipped with induction loop systems. In these systems, microphones transmit sound to a permanently installed induction loop wire (usually located in the ceiling or under the carpet), thus generating a current and creating an electromagnetic signal. When used on a specific setting, hearing aids can pick up this signal directly and wearers can adjust the volume as desired. The effect is the same as having a sound transmitted directly to your ears by your hearing aid. You need to choose a hearing aid that contains an electromagnetic coil to use this feature, so be sure to tell your audiologist all about your lifestyle when discussing options.

In-The-Canal (ITC) Hearing Aid

Smaller than an ITE and very discreet, the ITC fits partly into the ear canal. Due to its small size, the ITC comes with the option of remote control accessories for easy adjustment. Best for people with mild to moderate hearing loss.

In-The-Ear (ITE) Hearing Aid

This small device is worn inside the outer ear and designed to match the wearer’s skin tone. It is discreet, yet offers many features and options that smaller hearing aids can’t. Best for people with mild to moderately severe hearing loss.

Meniere’s Disease

This is an inner ear disorder that causes episodes of vertigo (spinning) along with roaring or buzzing and a blocked feeling in your ears. Your Bay Audiology audiologist can help diagnose this condition.

Noise Reduction/Suppression

This technology helps to reduce and remove outside noises that may make hearing more difficult, such as: background talking, music, traffic and more. These things are programed to come secondary to the individual you are speaking to, or entertainment you are watching.

Receiver-In-The-Canal (RIC)

Hearing Aid This is a discreet, comfortable design that is easy to fit. The receiver sits inside the ear canal and the body of the hearing aid sits behind the ear similar to the BTE. This hearing aid is a great choice for those with mild to moderate hearing loss who are sensitive to sensations in their ears as its very comfortable with natural sound.

Sensorineural Hearing Loss

This type of hearing loss is caused by damage to the nerves in the inner ear and can be treated with hearing aids. There are many different types of hearing loss, learn more here.


Tinnitus is a condition that causes ringing or buzzing in the ears. This condition can be treated or managed with hearing aids. Learn more - Click here.

Wireless CROS/BiCROS

When unaidable hearing loss in present in one ear, the Wireless CROS and BiCROS solution is available in some hearing aids to allow you to hear sounds from both sides.