Latest posts by Jeff Baller, Au.D., CCC-A (see all)
- Studies on Hearing Loss & Injuries - December 1, 2019
- How Hearing Loss May Affect Your Job - November 27, 2019
- Hearing Aids Mitigate Cognitive Decline in Older People - November 21, 2019
Have you noticed that your hearing isn’t as sharp as it once was? Are you worried that some of your daily activities could be damaging your hearing health? Hearing is one of your most important senses, and living with untreated hearing loss has a lot of negative effects on your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. Take charge of your hearing health, and form healthy habits to protect your hearing.
Learning About Hearing Loss
Did you know that 15% of adults report struggling to hear? According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), roughly 40 million Americans have some hearing loss. Sadly, only one third of those who need hearing aids ever get them, and millions of people choose to live with hearing loss day in and day out, and face the consequences of not being able to hear. Everyday activities and hobbies can be damaging your hearing, and your daily life could be taking a real toll on your ears.
Noise Induced Hearing Loss
One of the most common causes of hearing loss in adults is noise induced hearing loss (NIHL). This is hearing loss caused by exposure to extremely loud noises at work, or during loud leisure activities such as a music concert, sports event, or an afternoon at the shooting range. Even listening to loud music with earbuds can lead to hearing loss.
It’s important to recognize the negative impact of even a mild hearing loss. You’ll struggle to follow conversations in places with a lot of background noise, have a lower level of confidence, feeling left out in your friend group, and experience trouble communicating in your closest relationships. You could face social isolation or even depression. Hearing loss can also have a negative impact on your career, and you could be overlooked for the promotion you’ve been eyeing, or even risk being fired. NIHL is completely preventable! Protect your hearing when you’re in excessive noise, and avoid noise induced hearing loss.
When Are You Risking Your Hearing Health?
You may find yourself in noisy situations without even realizing it, and could be inadvertently damaging your hearing. The most common places you’ll experience excessive noise include attending a music concert or sports event, seeing a firework show, and spending an afternoon at the shooting range. Other risks you might not think about include commuting to work in heavy traffic, using your kitchen appliances such as a loud blender, or mowing the grass in your backyard.
Another big strain on your hearing health is listening to music with your personal listening device. We often use our music to drown out other background sounds, and when the sounds around us get louder, we’re more likely to crank up the volume to unsafe levels. With earbuds in our ears, this can send dangerously loud sound right into our ears and lead to hearing loss.
Healthy Habits to Protect Your Hearing
When it comes to protecting your hearing, the most important thing is to develop healthy habits. One of the best habits to get into is to carry a pair of foam or wax earplugs in your bag so that you’ll never be without hearing protection. When the environment gets too loud, you can protect your ears. Another habit it to simply walk away. After spending some time in the concert, give your ears a break, and leave the noise for a few minutes. Even a short break can protect your hearing, and you won’t leave the event with ringing in your ears, or feeling like the sounds around you are muffled.
When listening to music, keep the volume at a safe level. A good rule of thumb is the 60/60 rule. Listen to your music at 60% of the volume and take a break every 60 minutes to give your ears a rest. This will help you avoid hearing loss, and keep your ears healthy. It also helps to turn down background music, and keep other distracting sounds to a minimum since this will keep your ears rested, and help prevent further hearing loss.
Professional Hearing Services
Do you think you might have hearing loss? Visit us at Professional Hearing Services. We’ll help you find the perfect devices to treat your hearing loss, improve hearing, and prevent your hearing loss from getting worse.