Your sense of hearing is crucial in your life and when you lose it, there will be no natural way of getting it back. But somehow, hearing loss tends to go untreated and uncontrolled in the general population. As a matter of fact, permanent hearing loss affects one out of eight people (nearly 30 million people) over the age of 12 in the United States alone.
Protecting your hearing from the beginning 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 have been packaged with mobile devices since the early 2000s and are one of the greatest threats to hearing. These little devices fit snugly into the ear canal and pump sound straight into the inner ear and most smartphones included them. Listening to a movie or music on your mobile device at maximum volume for only 15 minutes can cause permanent hearing loss. Over the ear style headphones, especially the ones with noise canceling technology, would be a better option. 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 every day.
Keep your volume down
Your hearing can be damaged by other things besides earbuds. If you routinely listen to the radio or TV at loud volumes over sustained periods, your hearing can also be harmed. You’ll also want to avoid situations where loud sounds are constant, like construction zones, concerts, and shooting ranges. It might be unrealistic to completely avoid these settings particularly if they’re part of your job. If that’s the situation, then you’ll want to pay attention to the next item on the list.
Use hearing protection
If you have hobbies or work in a noisy setting, it’s essential that you utilize hearing protection. 85 decibels over a period of 15 minutes is enough to cause hearing loss. Compare that to the following:
- The average gunshot clocks in at 149 decibels, which is multiplied and amplified over the course of a one hour trip to an indoor gun range
- The majority of concerts are between 100 and 120 decibels with headliners usually playing for around an hour and 20 minutes
- 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 invest in a good set of earmuffs or earplugs.
Take auditory breaks
Sometimes giving your ears a break is the smartest thing you can do. Even if you use hearing protection, if you are subjected to loud noises like these for extended periods, you should take some quiet breaks to give your ears some time to recover. So after you leave a concert, you probably shouldn’t jump into your car and crank music.
Check your medicine
Your hearing may be substantially affected by the medication you take. There are certain medicines that have been proven to trigger hearing loss including some heart and cancer medications, aspirin, antibiotics, and anti-inflammatory medicine. Fortunately, medication related hearing loss normally 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? Contact us today to schedule a consultation.