Hearing loss happens when tiny hair cells in the cochlea, or inner ear, become damaged. Once this damage occurs, the resulting hearing loss is usually permanent. Luckily, there are lots of ways to protect your hearing, and they are easy!
Turn the volume down
Use headphones instead of earbuds. Headphones are less invasive and listen to music for no more than 60 minutes per day.
Wear ear protection, such as earplugs and noise-canceling earmuffs, if you work or do leisure activities in a noisy environment, including attending concerts and mowing the lawn.
Give your ears rest time - your ears need 16 hours of quiet to recover from one loud night.
Do not use Q-tips in your ears - ears are self-cleaning and a little bit of wax protects your ears.
Some medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs (including ibuprofen and aspirin) can contribute to hearing loss, so take these medications as directed.
Manage your stress. Increased anxiety causes tinnitus, or ringing in the ears.
Exercise! Movement pumps blood all over your body, including your ears, which keeps the parts of your inner ear healthy.
Keep your ears dry - water can contribute to the growth of bacteria which can lead to infections.
Go to your regular check-ups, and have your primary care provider conduct a hearing screening on your ears.
Ask your doctor if you have questions or are concerned. Your doctor can make appropriate referrals to an ear, nose & throat (ENT) specialist or an audiologist. If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss, it may have affected your speech or language skill development. Give us a call to set up a free consultation (253.237.3405).