Your sense of hearing is essential in your life and when you lose it, there will be no natural way for it to return But somehow, hearing loss tends to go untreated and unchecked in the general population. In fact, permanent hearing loss impacts one out of eight individuals (about 30 million people) over the age of 12 in the United States alone.
Protecting your hearing from the start is the best and simplest way to prevent hearing loss, but if you already have hearing loss you can get much of your hearing back with a hearing aid.
Protect your hearing with these five tips:
Earbuds should be avoided
Earbuds are one of the biggest dangers to hearing health today since they’ve come packaged with mobile devices going back to the first MP3 players in the early 2000s. Almost every smartphone available comes with a set of these little devices that fit snugly in your ear and pump sound straight into your ear canal. Listening to a movie or music on your mobile device at maximum volume for just 15 minutes can cause permanent hearing loss. Over the ear style headphones, particularly the ones with noise canceling technology, would be a better choice. No matter what sound devices you use, you should follow the 60/60 rule – keep the volume at 60% maximum and only use the devices for 60 minutes each day.
Keep your volume low
Earbuds don’t produce the only sounds that can harm your hearing. If you routinely listen to the TV or radio at high volumes over sustained periods, your hearing can also be damaged. Shooting ranges, concerts, construction zone, and other noisy settings should be avoided. Steering clear of these situations may only happen in a perfect world, especially if you’re a construction worker or a musician. If that’s the situation, then you’ll want to take note of the next item on the list.
Use hearing protection
If you have hobbies or work in a loud environment, it’s essential that you make use of hearing protection. 85 decibels over a period of 15 minutes is enough to cause hearing loss. To put that in perspective:
- The average firearm discharge clocks in at 149 decibels, which is multiplied and amplified over the course of a one hour visit to an indoor shooting range
- At most concerts the headlining band plays for up to two hours at well above 120 decibels
- Jackhammers at a construction site produce 130 decibels, which could cause significant harm after a 40-hour workweek
If you take part in any of these activities, you need to purchase a good set of earmuffs or earplugs.
Take auditory breaks
Sometimes giving your ears a rest is the smartest thing you can do. If you participated in any of the activities listed above, you really should make certain to take some quiet time for yourself so your ears can rest and recover, even if you were wearing ear protection. So after you leave a concert, you most likely shouldn’t jump into your car and crank music.
Check your medicine
Your medicine could actually have a substantial impact on your hearing. Aspirin, anti-inflammatories, antibiotics, and some heart and cancer medications have all been proven to cause hearing loss. Luckily, medication related hearing loss usually only happens when more than one of these medicines are taken together making it much less common.
Looking to find treatment for your hearing loss? Schedule an appointment with us for a hearing exam.