Hearing Loss Prevention
The world is a boisterous place. It is critical to protect your hearing no matter your age or how old you are.
Traffic, lawnmowers, leaf blowers, music, industrial machines, jet planes, hairdryers—all are commonplace and make a lot of noise.
Noise-induced hearing loss can occur at decibel levels as low as 85 dB, which is slightly quieter than a lawnmower.
Normal, however, does not imply healthily. If your ears are not protected, being exposed to higher sound levels increases your risk of hearing problems.
Being close to a gunshot or a jet plane taking off can instantly damage your hearing and even burst an eardrum.
In less than eight seconds, a rock concert or an emergency vehicle siren can wreak trouble.
According to a graphic from the Sight and Hearing Association, the maximum safe exposure for unprotected ears at 90 dB is roughly four hours.
The difficulty is that you might not realize you've lost some hearing, even if it shows up on a hearing test, says Si Chen, an assistant professor in the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Florida College of Medicine.
Noise's detrimental effects may not become apparent for five to twenty years after exposure. Because hearing loss is cumulative, frequent loud sound exposure will continue to deteriorate your hearing.
Rock concerts, in general, are overly loud, according to Chen.
"Many audiences come out from these events with problems of ringing ears as reported by many of them. It indicates that the music was too loud that was detrimental to their hearing."
The basic problem is that most individuals do not notice the degree of loudness. As a result, they may suffer from hearing loss which appears slowly and take several years to realize the loss."
If you are inclined to put your fingers in your ears in a noisy environment, such as a football stadium, trust your instincts.
Too much music played through earbuds or headphones at a high volume can also cause hearing loss.
There are apps that will monitor the sound levels you are exposed to if you have a smartphone, according to Chen.
The Apple Watch Noise app, for example, can track external noise and syncs with the iOS Health app.
Apple's built-in Health app will track headphone decibel output even if you don't have a smartwatch (find this data in the app, under Hearing).
Other apps, such as Sound Meter for Android, use your phone's microphone to measure noise.
If you put your earbuds up to the mic, they can pick surrounding sounds as well as headphone levels.
Take cues from your surroundings when it comes to other devices, such as shortwave radios.
If you're out walking and can't hear the traffic or birds around you, the sound is probably too loud.
You can also purchase volume-limiting headphones to do the job for you.
The dangers of ignoring your Ears
Even if the prospect of losing your hearing does not appear to be a big issue, you should begin to consider it.
"In most of the cases, hearing issues or hearing loss is irreversible for many people," Chen says. "It increased over the time that arises with a minor issue. Most people are used to being unaware they have significant hearing loss until it is too late."
Because the inner ear cells essential for hearing cannot be regenerated or repaired, once hearing is damaged, there is no way to return it to its original sharpness.
The most common method of restoring hearing is to use a hearing aid.
Damaged ears affect people of all ages, not just the elderly. Noise-induced hearing loss is becoming more widespread in children, with roughly 12% of children suffering from it, according to Chen.
Delays in speech and language development, as well as learning issues, might result as a result of this.
Chen advocates wearing both at the same time in a particularly loud location, such as a shooting range.
Another simple strategy to safeguard your hearing is to avoid noisy environments and seek out quieter environments.
Sit far away from the band or the loudspeakers in nightclubs. Repair your car's silencer if it's making a noise.
Yes, there is a lot of noise in the world. If you take the proper care, you may enjoy living in it and hearing whatever you want.