As a middle-aged or older adult, you may realize that you’re continually increasing the volume on your TV remote. Or you’re asking people around you to speak up. Well, these are two signs that you’re gradually losing your hearing. But what leads to hearing loss?
Age: as you grow older, tiny hair cells in the inner ears begins to break down. As this happens more and more, they can’t pick up sound vibrations like they did in the past.
Noise: exposing yourself to loud sounds damages the hair cells in your inner ears.
In the first case, your goose is cooked. Fortunately, you can do something to avoid the latter.
Here are the primary tips to help your ears remain as sharp as possible:
- Don’t Expose Yourself to Excess Noise
Doctors will advise you to avoid exposing yourself to loud noise. But how loud is too loud? Determining this can be a challenge.
But if you have to shout over the noise around you, then it’sloud enough to damage your ears. For instance, the sounds from concert speakers, motorcycles, earphones, and power tools like drills and saws are loud enough to be problematic for your hearing.Try to avoid them where possible, or if you can’t, wear hearing protection (see below).
- Wear Hearing Protection
At times, it’s impossible to avoid loud noises altogether. If this happens, think about wearing ear protection. It’ll help minimize these effects. Hearing protection equipmentinclude the following;
- Ear Muffs;
These fit tightly over your ears, like headphones, to reduce sound levels by 15 to 30 decibels.
- Ear Plugs:
In most cases, these are made of rubber or latex. The plugs go into your ear canals and can reduce sounds or noises by 15 to 30 decibels.
Even better, wear the two together for higher protection.
- Allow Your Ears Time to Recover
Yes, you’ve been wearing hearing protection. But do you know, exposing yourself to these loud sounds is also harmful?So, if you’re exposed to loud music, say in a bar or concert, allow your ears time to recover. If possible, step outside for five minutes so that they can rest. What’s more, researchers argue that your ears require at least 16 hours to recover from a night out. How do you achieve this? Limit the sound you expose yourself to the following day.
- Stop Using Cotton Swabs
It’s common for people to use swabs to clean their ear canals. But that’s not advisable.
Remember, some bits of wax in your ears is quite essential. The ears are a self-cleaning organ. Its wax prevents dust and other harmful chemicals from getting into your ears.
Don’t forget, inserting foreign objects into your ear canal can potentially damage your eardrum. You don’t want this to happen.
If there’s excess wax, use a damp towel to clean around the canal. Alternatively, use a wax removal solution for a few nights. It softens the wax allowing it to flow on its own.
Always seek professional help and care where possible.
Your ears are precious. It’s essential that you do whatever isnecessary to protect them.