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 strangely, the general public tends to disregard hearing loss. As a matter of fact, permanent hearing loss affects one in every eight individuals (about 30 million people) 12 and older in the United States alone.
While there are treatments that can help you regain your hearing, like hearing aids, it’s such an easy thing to protect your ears from the start to prevent avoidable hearing loss.
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 devices in the early 2000s. Almost every smartphone available comes with a set of these little devices that sit snugly in your ear and pump sound straight into your ear canal. You can get permanent hearing damage by listening to music or a movie on your mobile device at maximum volume for only 15 minutes. The better choice would be to get a set of earmuff-style headphones that go over your ears, which is made even more effective if you can find a pair that has noise-canceling technology. No matter what devices you use, you should follow the 60/60 rule – keep the volume at 60% maximum and only use the devices for 60 minutes per day.
Reduce the volume
Earbuds don’t generate the only sounds that can damage your hearing. Loud noises from a TV or radio can do as much harm if you consistently listen to them over a sustained period of time. You’ll also want to avoid situations where loud noises are constant, such as construction zones, concerts, and shooting ranges. It may be impractical to entirely avoid these settings particularly if they’re part of your job. The next item on the list will be significant if you’re in this situation.
Utilize hearing protection
If you have hobbies or work in a noisy setting, it’s crucial that you make use of hearing protection. Hearing loss can happen in just 15 minutes at 85 decibels. To put that in perspective:
- The noise of a construction site can be above 130 decibels and many workers spend 40 or more hours every week there
- Over a one hour visit to the indoor shooting range, your ears are repeatedly exposed to gunfire that clocks in at over 150 decibels on average
- At the majority of concerts the headlining band plays for up to two hours at well above 120 decibels
The moral here is that you should invest in some sort of hearing protection such as earmuffs or earplugs if you take part in any of these activities.
Take auditory breaks
Sometimes giving your ears a break is the smartest thing you can do. Even if you wear ear protection, if you are subjected to loud sounds like these for prolonged periods, you should take some quiet breaks to give your ears some time to rest. That means, you definitely shouldn’t get into your car and begin blaring loud music right after you leave a 3-hour concert.
Check your medicine
Your medicine could actually have a considerable impact on your hearing. Aspirin, anti-inflammatories, antibiotics, and certain heart and cancer medicines have all been proven to cause hearing loss. The good news is that medication-related hearing loss is not common and is more likely if you use two or more of those medications together making it easier to prevent.
Looking to find treatment for your hearing loss? Contact us today to set up a consultation.