At the start of the new year, many of us have goals or resolutions that center around our health. Maybe you want to eat more vegetables or sign up for a fitness class at the Jack Alter Fort Lee Community Center.
One area of our health that often gets overlooked is our hearing. Consider changing that this year and take steps to protect your hearing.
Loud Noise Can Cause Hearing Loss
Exposure to loud noise is one of the leading causes of hearing loss. Research has shown that overexposure to noise at or above 85 dBA can cause permanent hearing loss. Unfortunately, many common activities can reach that volume and louder, posing a risk to your hearing health. Some examples include:
- Working in a loud environment like a construction site
- Attending loud concerts or sporting events
- Hunting or going to the shooting range
- Riding snowmobiles or motorcycles
- Setting off firecrackers or fireworks
- Mowing the lawn or using a leaf blower
- Listening to music at a high volume while wearing headphones or earbuds
Four Steps To Protect Your Hearing in 2023
The good news is that there are several steps that you can take to protect your ears and minimize your risk of hearing loss.
- Turn the volume down. Whether listening to music on your headphones or binging your favorite TV show at home, make sure you’re keeping the volume at a reasonable level. The sound should be loud enough that you don’t need to strain to hear but not so loud that you can hear it from another room in your home.
- Take a break from loud environments. Limit the amount of time you’re around loud noise and try to stay away from things like loudspeakers at an event. If you need to step outside or away from the noise, do so to give your ears a break.
- Use hearing protection. Things like earplugs, earmuffs and custom earmolds can help reduce the volume you’re exposed to and keep your ears safe while engaging in louder activities. The type you choose should depend on how much noise reduction you need, what activities you are engaging in, and your personal comfort level. Essentially whatever you are most likely to wear and keep with you during loud noise exposure is going to be best.
- Get a hearing test. Getting a hearing test can help whether you’re experiencing symptoms of hearing loss or not. Having a baseline gives your audiologist something to compare with future results. If you have any degree of hearing loss, they can recommend treatments like hearing aids and discuss ways to prevent further damage.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Speech & Hearing Associates today.