Pizza is a fascinating thing. You can adjust the toppings, sauces, even the cheeses on it, but as long as it satisfies a few general criteria, it’s still a pizza. Hearing loss is a lot like that. Symptoms and presentations are caused by a number of different problems, loud noises, genetic factors, age, or ear blockages, but as long as you have a hard time hearing sounds, it’s still hearing loss.
Minimizing the damage is the first thing you should do when confronted with hearing loss of any variety. You can, after all, take some simple measures to limit additional damage and protect your ears.
Tip 1: Clean your ears
Did you clean behind your ears? It’s one of those early hygiene lessons you learn, or should have learned, right? In terms of hearing health, we aren’t concerned with the parts behind your ears, but rather your inner ears.
There are various ways that earwax accumulation can affect your hearing:
- If you use a hearing aid, earwax can also interfere with that. This might make you think that your hearing is starting to fail.
- Unclean ears increase your chances of developing an ear infection, which creates swelling that when significant enough, disrupts your ability to hear. When your ear infection goes away, your regular hearing will normally come back (but that’s something you should talk to a doctor about).
- Sound waves going to your ears can be impeded when a significant amount of earwax accumulates. When this happens you won’t be capable of hearing as well.
A cotton swab is absolutely not the correct tool to use to clear any earwax that you may have noticed out and is strongly discouraged. Cotton swabs can cause damage and will usually make the problem worse. Over-the-counter ear drops are recommended as an alternative.
Tip 2: Avoid loud sounds that could cause hearing loss
This one is so instinctive it practically shouldn’t be on the list. But what exactly constitutes a “loud sound”? For instance, freeway driving can be loud enough to damage your ears over a long period of time. Your ears can also be damaged by frequent use of your lawn mower. As you can tell, it isn’t only blaring speakers or loud rock concerts that harm your ears.
Here are some ways to steer clear of loud, harmful noises.:
- Using an app on your phone to alert you when volumes get to hazardous thresholds.
- Using hearing protection when noisy environments are necessary. Are you working on a noisy industrial floor? It’s okay if you want to attend that rock concert. But wear the required ear protection. Contemporary earmuffs and earplugs offer sufficient protection.
- Refraining from turning the volume up on your headphones when you’re viewing videos or listening to tunes. When approaching dangerous levels, most headphones have a built-in warning.
There’s a gradual progression to hearing loss that’s due to loud sound. So, even if your hearing “feels” okay after a loud event, that doesn’t mean it is. We can only help you determine if you have hearing loss if you call for an appointment.
Tip 3: Treat any hearing loss you might have
In most instances, hearing loss accumulates gradually over an extended time period. So, the sooner you catch the damage, the better you’ll be able to prevent additional damage. In terms of hearing loss, that’s why treatment is so significant. Your hearing will be in the best situation if you get treatment and follow through with it.
Here’s how treatments work:
- When you come in and see us we will give you personalized instructions and advice to help you steer clear of further damage to your ears.
- Hearing aids can stop some, but not all, damage. If you’re wearing hearing aids, for instance, you won’t always need to turn volumes up to damaging levels. Because hearing aids prevent this damage, they can also prevent further degeneration of your hearing.
- Hearing aids prevent the brain strain and social isolation that exacerbate hearing loss-related health problems.
In the long run, you will be helped by using hearing aids
While it’s true that hearing loss has no cure, hearing specialists are focused on limiting additional harm to your ears. In many circumstances, hearing loss treatment is one of the best ways to achieve that. Your current level of hearing will be maintained and hearing loss will be prevented from getting worse with the proper treatment.
When you wear ear protection, practice good hygiene, and pursue hearing loss treatment with us, you’re taking the correct steps to prevent hearing loss while also giving yourself the best chance of healthy hearing in the future.