Hearing loss can present itself as a major obstacle in various parts of life. Faced with the loss of hearing, our abilities to communicate with others dwindles greatly. It’s therefore of paramount importance that we take precautions well in time. There are two main reasons which are known to cause hearing loss.
One among these is age. As we grow older, there is a gradual breakdown in the tiny hair cells of the inner ears which diminishes their ability to pick up sound vibrations. Of course, the effects of loud sound on the hair cells of the ears is well-documented. However, there are ways and means through which one can avoid the occurrence of hearing loss, whether sound or age related. Here are eight tips which promise to keep your hearing intact.
1. Stay away from excessive noise
One cannot overemphasize the importance of staying away from excessive noise, as much as possible. If you have to shout at the top of your voice to be heard by people around you, you can be rest assured that the noise is too loud. Some of the most disruptive sounds are emitted by power tools like saws and drills, earphones, concert speakers and vehicles, both motorcycles and cars. Although one cannot completely eliminate the presence of unwanted noise from our lives, we can try to reduce it significantly.
2. Take proactive steps
Of course, it goes without saying that you cannot control everything or everyone around you. However, taking some proactive steps goes a long way in ensuring that your hearing stays intact. One of these is purchasing appliances and electrical gadgets which have low noise rating and are not disruptive to the environment. In case you happen to be in a movie theatre, restaurant or any other place where you are a frequent visitor, you can always ask the concerned authorities to lower the volume.
3. Say no to earphones
Earphones are notorious for damaging the hearing ability of a person. Inserting them in your ears causes damage to the tiny hairs that sit on the top of hair cells, thereby causing complete hearing loss. If you cannot avoid using them for any reason, limit their use as much as possible. One good way of protecting your ears is using protection such as earplugs and earmuffs. These tools have been proven to significantly reduce noise levels.
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4. Keep infections away
One of the greatest factors behind hearing loss is ear infections. This is especially so among children and young people. Always be on the lookout for any signs of an infection, and if you have a suspicion of having contracted one, rush to the doctor immediately. Even a small cut holds the capacity to develop into a serious infection, so prevention is certainly the best cure in this case. Children who are unresponsive, set the TV volume louder than normal and are always prone to ear pulling, may have contracted an infection.
5. Check the medications you take
It is very important to be careful with the kind of medications you take. Various medicines have been known to cause permanent loss of hearing. Some of these include certain kinds of antibiotics and cancer-fighting drugs. In cases where you are required to take prescription medicines, it would be better to enquire with your doctor regarding its negative impacts. If you happen to take aspirin, make sure that you limit its dose and avoid taking it unless really required to do so.
6. Take care while removing your earwax
In spite of repeated warnings about inserting harmful foreign objects in your ears, most people do not think twice before using a hairpin or some other blunt object to extract earwax. This is very dangerous, and could have serious consequences. A small mistake on your par could lead to a complete loss of hearing. If you have to get your ears cleaned, pay a visit to the doctor. He will do it for you in a safe manner. However, the best course is not to remove earwax completely, as earwax is known to protect your ears from external damage.
7. Improve your hearing by reducing stress
Stress is the cause of innumerable diseases, and surprisingly, hearing loss is one of them. Constant stress and anxiety have been known to cause both permanent and temporary tinnitus, which causes a continuous ringing in the ears. High levels of stress causes your body to go into flight or fight mode, which is basically a reaction in which the entire body is flooded with adrenaline to help your flee or combat danger. However, this process puts a lot of pressure on the nerves, body heat, blood flow and more. It’s believed that this pressure travels to the inner ear and contributes to tinnitus symptoms.
8. Regular checkups are the key
One of the most obvious, and basic ways, of ensuring that your hearing ability remains impact is undergoing regular checkups. This is all the more important because hearing loss occurs with time. For this very reason, it’s also recommended that you have annual hearing consultations with a hearing healthcare professional. This will enable you to identify any hearing problems and take care of it at the earliest.