Woman cupping had around ear

Oxford Dictionaries defines life-hack as: “A strategy or technique adopted in order to manage one’s time and daily activities in a more efficient way.” Life hacks can save you both money and time, and some are so simple you’ll wonder why you hadn’t previously thought of them.

Inventive but simple life-hacks include rotating your toaster on its side to make a grilled cheese sandwich, using the sticky part of sticky notes to clean in between the keys of a keyboard, and using duct tape to open jars.

Life-hacks can also relate to the body: some examples include scratching your ear to eliminate an itch in your throat, lying on your left side to ease acid reflux, and pressing your tongue flat against the roof of your mouth to alleviate brain freeze from ice cream or frozen foods.

But what about hearing? Are there any life-hacks we can exploit to allow us to hear better or easier? As it happens, there are quite a few—here are our picks for the best 7.

1. Check your hearing online

You can rapidly check for hearing loss using one of the many applications accessible online, or by completing the online hearing test on our website. If the findings reveal hearing loss, you can subsequently schedule a professional hearing test with your local hearing care provider.

2. Make use of white noise for a better night’s sleep

Research suggests that employing white noise can help you sleep better as it helps to establish a bedtime routine, keeps the room calm, and helps “shut down” your active brain.

3. Wear specialty earplugs to avoid hearing loss

Extended and repeated exposure to any sound above 85 decibels can create irreversible hearing loss (rock concerts can reach over 100 decibels). Wearing custom made earplugs is a simple way to avoid hearing injury, and the latest earplugs can retain sound quality while limiting volume. Contact your local hearing care provider for more information.

4. Safeguard your hearing with the inverse square law

This law of physics could end up saving your hearing. The inverse square law specifies that as you double the distance from the origin of sound the strength of the sound declines by 75 percent. So, in lieu of standing front row at a rock concert, increase your distance from the loudspeakers as much as you can (while retaining a good view).

5. Use the 60/60 rule when listening to music

If you listen to a portable music player with headphones, maintain the volume at 60 percent of the maximum volume for a maximum of 60 minutes per day to prevent hearing loss.

6. Favor your right ear for speech

A study executed over the course of six years by researchers at UCLA and the University of Arizona discovered that the right ear is better designed for speech and the left ear for music. So the next time you’re having trouble hearing a conversation, turn your right ear towards the speaker.

7. Regulate your listening environment

Wearing hearing aids is probably not regarded as a life-hack, but it is the only means to appropriately enhance hearing in the presence of hearing loss—and the things you can do with modern hearing aids are truly amazing.

For example, some hearing aids are wireless and can be controlled with mobile phones or digital watches. As a result, the individual can discreetly regulate volume and settings for each circumstance—in essence, the user can literally control the sound environment. We can’t find any other life-hack cooler or more useful than that.


What did we forget? What are your preferred life-hacks (health-related or in general)?