Need to have your ears examined? If so, you’ll want to visit a doctor who can provide an ear examination. Doctors who specialize in ears are called otolaryngologists, although your general practitioner can also give your ears an exam during a check-up.

No matter the type of doctor, you can expect them to use an otoscope to take a peek into your ear. To insert the otoscope, the doctor will pull back on the ear lobe to straighten out the ear canal.

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What might doctors be looking for? Ears are very sensitive and they’re prone to infections. A doctor can check for inflammation, blockage, and other signs that something might be wrong. For example, ear wax can build up and fail to drain out of the ear.

Medical professionals can also test your hearing using a tuning fork and other tools. Unfortunately, some people are hard of hearing. If you believe your hearing is compromised, it’s important to have it checked out. Ultimately, your hearing is crucial. At the same time, ears are very sensitive and a variety of health complications can pop up. Regular visits to an otolaryngologist and speaking with your family doctor can help you identify, treat, and avoid ear and hearing-related issues.