Understanding the Audiogram

An audiogram is a graph that shows the results of a hearing test.  The sound intensity in decibels (dB HL) is plotted on the audiogram from top to bottom with the quiet sounds near the top and loud sounds at the bottom.  The pitch, or frequency, in hertz (Hz) is plotted with the low-pitch sounds to the left and the high-pitch sounds to the right.  Results of an audiogram show the softest sounds a person can hear, and if there is hearing loss, what kind it is and the severity.  This will help the audiologist decide what solution is best for the hearing loss. 


Look at the audiogram below to get an idea of the placement (by pitch and intensity) of familiar sounds such as a dog barking or a telephone ringing or different sounds of speech.


Speech discrimination, or word recognition, is scored as a percentage of words that can be repeated correctly at a comfortable intensity level in quiet with no background noise.