Many people experience hearing loss, including about two-thirds of the population who are under the age of 65. This means that it isn’t just senior citizens at risk of losing their hearing. There are several steps that you can take to preserve your hearing health so that your ears are in good health tomorrow and beyond.
Taking time to visit an audiology specialist can help you to learn more about hearing loss and ways to protect your hearing. I, Dr. Scott Marquardt, and the team here at Clarity Hearing are passionate about our community and their hearing health needs.
Avoid Loud Noises
Loud and prolonged noises should be avoided whenever possible. Everyday activities such as listening to music, running equipment, and more. Motorcycles, lawnmowers, and other machinery can be louder than you realize. If you are going to expose yourself to these loud noises, wear ear protection or, when possible, turn the volume down. If people can hear your music from the other side of your headphones, it’s a good indication that the volume is too loud.
Wear Ear Protection
There may be some instances when you don’t have a choice but to be around loud noises, like going to work or a music concert. In this case, you should consider proper ear protection. This can be in the form of earplugs, noise-canceling headphones, and much more. If you work in a place where loud noises are a part of the job, be sure that you ask for sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE).
Protect Your Ears
When you go out in the cold, you want to make sure to protect your ears. Prolonged exposure to cold weather can cause damage to your ear canals. Make sure to wrap us when there is a chill outside; wear earmuffs or a hat that will provide full coverage for your ears.
You also want to make sure that you are protecting your ears when you play contact sports. Helmets with special pads are useful when you are wrestling, playing football, or participating in any other game.
Maintain Optimal Health
The various choices that you make in your life are going to have an impact on your health, including smoking, poor food choices, and even increased stress. All of these bad habits can play a role in your hearing health. When you keep your body in optimal condition, it can help you hold onto your hearing for as long as possible.
Know Your Family History
It’s essential to be aware of your family’s history when it comes to hearing conditions. There may be some genetic ailments that run in your family. By being aware of these early on, you can make sure to get tested for them. The earlier you are diagnosed, the better the prognosis can be.
Listen to Family & Friends
You should always listen to your family and friends. While you may be aware of the signs and symptoms of hearing loss, you may not notice them. However, if family or friends are telling you that you are always asking people to repeat themselves or you are yelling at people because you cannot detect your volume, it may be time to listen to them. You will want to schedule a hearing test with us as soon as possible.
Use Your Hearing Aid
When you have hearing aids, you want to make sure that you use them. Unfortunately, not everyone chooses to use them because they feel self-conscious about them. However, the newer styles of hearing aids are very discreet, with some being practically invisible. You will be able to enjoy a higher quality of life when you choose to wear them.
Know the Signs of Hearing Loss
There are several signs and symptoms of hearing loss that you should be aware of, including not being able to identify high frequencies, developing tinnitus, switching phone calls from your left ear to your right ear, and asking people to repeat themselves often. If you find that you’re doing any of these with frequency, it’s time to schedule a hearing test.
In many instances, you can protect your hearing by merely being more aware of what you are exposing your ears to daily. Once you start to lose your hearing, some of it may not be reversible. Which is why you will want to start protecting your ears as soon as possible – and it’s never too early to get started. If you suspect that you are already beginning to lose your hearing, it’s vital to make an appointment to find out what can be done to preserve as much of your precious hearing health as possible.
Scott Marquardt is the owner of Clarity Hearing and a highly skilled audiologist who has been in practice for over 20 years. Dr. Marquardt earned a master’s degree in audiology from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, and a doctorate from A.T. Still University. He is a member of the American Speech Language Hearing Association and a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology. He and the team offer comprehensive hearing healthcare services and specialize in the care of tinnitus, imbalance, and auditory processing disorders.