As we get older we tend to think that hearing loss only affects the older generation. You probably had older adults around you trying to understand conversations or using hearing aids.
But much like 30 or 60 only seemed old to you until it quickly drew near, when you learn more regarding hearing loss, you come to understand that it has much less to do with growing old and far more to do with something else entirely.
A lot of people are reluctant to admit they suffer from hearing loss because it makes them feel like they are getting old.
Hearing Loss Is an “Any Age Condition”
By the age of 12, hearing specialists already begin to diagnose some hearing loss in 13% of cases. Obviously, someone who is 12 is not “old”. Teen hearing loss has gone up 33% within the last 3 decades.
What are the key factors involved?
Out of all 45 – 55-year olds, 2% currently suffer from disabling hearing loss, and with 55 – 65-year-olds it’s 8%.
It’s not an aging issue. It’s totally possible to stop, even though most people might think of it as an aging problem. And you have the power to substantially minimize the development of your hearing loss.
Age-related hearing loss, recognised medically as sensorineural hearing loss, is most commonly brought on by loud noise.
For decades hearing loss was considered to be inescapable as you get older. But today, scientists know more concerning how to protect your hearing and also restore it.
The Reason why Loud Noise Causes Hearing loss
You need to recognize that loud noise is not harmless if you wish to begin to safeguard your ears.
Sound is made up of waves of pressure. These waves travel into your ear canal. They move all the way down beyond your eardrum and into your inner ear.
Tiny hair cells resonate here inside of the inner ear. A neurological code is made up of how fast and how frequently these tiny hairs vibrate. This code will be translated by your brain into the sound of traffic, someone shouting for help, a waterfall, or any other sound which might be around.
The problem is that when noises get too loud these little hairs are injured beyond repair. The sound shakes them until they die.
When these hairs are gone then so is your hearing.
Hearing Loss Caused by Loud Noise is Permanent
If you cut your hand, the injury will heal. But when you injure these little hair cells, they don’t heal, and they will not ever grow back. Each and every time you are exposed to loud noise, more of these cells are lost for ever.
Hearing loss advances as they die.
Everyday Sounds Which Cause Hearing Damage
This is a unexpected thing for most people to discover. You might not think twice about:
- Going to a concert/play/movie
- Wearing earbuds/head phones
- Turning the car stereo way up
- Mowing the lawn
- Using farm equipment
- Riding a motorcycle/snowmobile
- Driving on a busy highway with the windows or top down
- Working in a factory or other loud industry
- Playing music in a band
These activities don’t need to be given up. It is possible to reduce noise induced hearing damage by taking pro-active steps.
Don’t Allow Hearing Loss Make you Feel old
You can acknowledge that you’re suffering from hearing problems without having to feel old. The longer you dismiss it, the worse it will get, and you will wind up feeling older much sooner because of:
- Increased Fall Risk
- Social Isolation
- More frequent trips to the ER
- Strained relationships
For people with neglected hearing loss, these are significantly more likely.
Stop Continued Hearing Problems
Start by determining how to prevent hearing loss.
- Sound meter apps are readily available for your cellphone that can tell you how loud things are.
- Dangerous volumes should be avoided without the proper ear protection. More than 85 dB (decibels) can cause irreversible hearing damage in only 8 hours. 110 dB takes around 15 minutes to cause permanent hearing loss. 120 dB and above causes instant hearing loss. A gunshot is around 140 to 170 dB.
- Recognize that If you’ve ever had trouble hearing temporarily following a concert, you already caused permanent damage to your hearing. It will get a lot more pronounced over time.
- Use earplugs or maybe sound-dampening earmuffs when appropriate.
- Comply with work hearing protection policies.
- Reduce your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Refrain from standing near to loudspeakers or cranking speakers up at home.
- Invest in earbuds/headphones that come with integrated volume control. They never go over 90 decibels. Most people would need to listen almost non-stop all the time to cause permanent damage.
- High blood pressure, not enough blood oxygen, and some medications can cause you to be more vulnerable at lower volumes. To be sure, don’t ever listen to headphones at above 50%. Car speakers vary.
- Put on your hearing aid. Not wearing a hearing aid when you actually need them causes the brain to atrophy. It’s similar to your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it gets much harder to start walking again.
Schedule a Hearing Test
Are you in denial or putting off on it? Make the right choice now rather than later. The sooner you make the smart choice the less damage you will continue to do.
Consult Your Hearing Professional Regarding Hearing Answers
There are not any “natural cures” for hearing loss. If hearing loss is serious, it might be time to invest in a hearing aid.
A Cost-Benefits Evaluation is the First Step
Many sufferers are either in denial about hearing loss, or alternatively, they make the decision to “tough it out.” They presume hearing aids make them seem old. Or maybe they believe that they cost too much.
However when they understand that hearing loss will worsen faster and can cause many health and relationship complications, it’s easy to be certain that the pros far outweigh the cons.
Consult a hearing care specialist today about getting a hearing test. And if hearing aids are recommended, don’t worry about “feeling old.” Hearing aids today are much sleeker and more sophisticated than you probably think!