Isn’t pizza interesting? As long as a few criteria are met, you can alter toppings, cheese, and sauce, and it’s still a pizza. That’s a lot like hearing loss. But as long as you have a hard time hearing sound, it’s still hearing loss regardless of whether it’s due to genetic factors, age, obstructions, or exposure to loud noise.
Normally, when you’re confronted with hearing loss (regardless of the variety), the first thing you should do is try to limit the damage. You can, after all, take some basic steps to limit further damage and protect your ears.
Tip 1: Keep your ears clean
Did you clean behind your ears? It’s one of those childhood hygiene lessons you learn, or should have learned, right? But it’s your inner ears that we’re worried about here, in terms of hearing health, not the back of your ears.
Keeping your ears free of wax buildup can improve your hearing in a variety of different ways:
- Earwax buildup also interferes with the functionality of your hearing aid if you have one. This might make it seem as if your hearing is diminishing.
- Unkempt ears raise your risk of developing an ear infection, which creates inflammation that when significant enough, interferes with your hearing. When your ear infection clears, your normal hearing will normally come back (but that’s something you should consult a doctor about).
- Sound waves going to your ears can be impeded when a significant amount of earwax accumulates. As a result, your ability to hear becomes decreased.
A cotton swab is definitely not the right tool to use to get any earwax that you may have noticed out and is strongly discouraged. In most situations, a cotton swab will make things worse or cause additional damage. Instead, use over-the-counter ear drops.
Tip 2: Really loud noises should be avoided
This one is so instinctive it practically shouldn’t be on this list. But what exactly constitutes a “loud sound”? For instance, highway driving can be loud enough to harm your ears over a long amount of time. The engine on your lawnmower can be pretty taxing on your ears, as well. Clearly, other things besides rock concerts or blaring speakers can damage your ears.
Here are some ways to steer clear of loud, damaging noises.:
- When you’re listening to tunes or watching videos, keep the volume of your headphones at safe levels. When approaching dangerous levels, most headphones have a built-in alert.
- When decibel levels get to a dangerous volume, you can use an app on your phone to alert you.
- Using hearing protection when loud environments are necessary. Are you working on the floor of a loud factory? Do you really want to attend that rock concert? That’s cool. But you should use the appropriate hearing protection. Contemporary earmuffs and earplugs provide sufficient protection.
There’s a slow development to hearing loss that’s due to loud sound. So, even if your hearing “feels” fine after a loud event, that doesn’t mean it is. We can only help you find out if you have hearing loss if you call for an appointment.
Tip 3: Manage any hearing loss you may have
In general, hearing loss is cumulative. You’ll be in a better position to protect against further damage if you recognize your hearing loss early. That’s why treatment is incredibly important when it comes to limiting hearing loss. Practical treatments (on which you follow through) will leave your hearing in the best possible situation.
Here’s how treatments work:
- Hearing aids can prevent some, but not all, damage. If you’re using hearing aids, for example, you won’t always have to turn volumes up to harmful levels. Because hearing aids prevent this damage, they can also prevent further degeneration of your hearing.
- When you come in for a consultation we will provide individualized guidance and advice to help you steer clear of further damage to your ears.
- Hearing aids reduce the brain strain and social isolation that worsen hearing loss-related health conditions.
In the long run, you will be helped by using hearing aids
Despite the fact that we can’t cure hearing loss, we are doing hard work to help you limit further damage. Treatment of hearing loss is typically one of the best approaches to that. The right treatment will help you protect your current level of hearing and stop it from getting worse.
You’re taking the proper steps to prevent hearing loss and put yourself in the best position to continue to have healthy hearing if you practice good hygiene, utilize ear protection, and come see us for regular hearing exams.