Pizza is an interesting thing. You can change the toppings, sauces, even the cheeses involved, but as long as it meets some basic criteria, it’s still a pizza. That’s similar to hearing loss. Symptoms and manifestations are due to many different problems – loud noises, genetics, age, ear obstructions – but as long as you have difficulty hearing sounds, it’s still hearing loss.
Limiting the damage is usually the first step to take when you start to notice hearing loss. This is just one basic step you can take to safeguard your hearing from further damage.
Tip 1: Keep your ears clean
Did you clean behind your ears? It’s one of those original hygiene lessons you learn (or should have learned), right? But in terms of the health of your hearing, it’s the inner ear, not behind the ears, that we’re worried about.
Keeping your ears clear of wax buildups can help your hearing in numerous different ways:
- If you use hearing aids, earwax will also interfere with their functionality. This might make it seem as though your hearing is getting worse.
- When wax buildup becomes substantial, it can block sound waves from getting into your inner ear. Your hearing becomes compromised as a result.
- Your brain and your ability to decipher sounds can be impacted over time by untreated hearing loss.
- Your ability to hear can be hampered by inflammation which is caused by severe ear infection as a result of unclean ears. Your functional hearing will typically return when then the infection goes away.
You should not ever try to use a cotton swab to dig out earwax. Cotton swabs can jam the earwax further up into the ear canal and can trigger even more harm. You can buy earwax removal drops over-the-counter at your local drugstore which work better and are safer than swabs.
Tip 2: Avoid loud noises that could cause hearing loss
This one is so intuitive it almost doesn’t need to be on the list. But identifying what comprises “loud sound” isn’t easy for most individuals. It’s not just blaring speakers or loud rock concerts that harm your ears, freeway driving can be loud enough to damage your ears over a long period of time. Your ears can also be compromised by things like your lawn mower engine. And, be mindful to safeguard your hearing during those 4th of July fireworks!
Here are a few practical ways to avoid noise damage:
- When you’re streaming movies or listening to music, watch your headphone volume. Most cellphones include built-in alerts when you’re getting close to a hazardous level.
- When you can’t avoid being in a loud setting, wear hearing protection. If you want to attend a loud rock concert or if you work in a noisy factory that’s fine but don’t forget your hearing protection. Modern earmuffs and earplugs offer ample protection.
- Using an app on your phone to let you know when decibel levels reach damaging levels.
So if you go to a loud event and your hearing seems fine after, that doesn’t mean it is, because hearing loss is usually a gradual progression. Only a hearing specialist can let you know if you have hearing loss.
Tip 3: Treat any hearing loss you might have
In general, hearing loss is cumulative. So, the earlier you catch the damage, the better you’ll be able to avoid further damage. So when it comes to hearing loss, this is the reason why having it treated is so crucial. Effective treatments (on which you follow through) will leave your hearing in the best possible condition.
Here’s how treatments work:
- We will help you avoid further damage by providing you with customized advice and instructions.
- Hearing aids can stop some, but not all, damage. For example, hearing aids will prevent you from turning your television volume up so loud it harms your ears. Because hearing aids stop this damage, they can also prevent further deterioration of your hearing.
- Mental strain, social isolation, and other hearing loss-associated health problems can be prevented by hearing aids.
In the long run you will be benefited by wearing hearing aids
Treatment is one of the main ways to prevent hearing loss in spite of the fact that there is no cure. Treating your hearing loss appropriately will prevent additional damage while preserving your present level of hearing.
When you use hearing protection, practice good hygiene, and engage in hearing loss treatment with a hearing specialist, you’re taking the correct steps to limit hearing loss while also giving yourself the best chance for healthy hearing in the years to come!