Generally, when you’re confronted with hearing loss (no matter the variety), the first thing you should do is try to limit the damage. There are, after all, some straightforward steps you can take to protect your ears and minimize further hearing loss.
Step 1: Keep Your Ears Clean
Remember learning to make sure you clean behind your ears when you learned general hygiene (or at least should have learned). But it’s actually the inner ear we’re concerned with keeping clean when it comes to hearing health, rather than behind the ears.
There are numerous ways that keeping your ears free from wax can help your hearing:
- Sound can be blocked from getting into the inner ear when there’s too much wax accumulation. This reduces your ability to hear.
- Untidy ears increase your chances of getting an ear infection, which produces inflammation that (when serious enough) impedes your ability to hear. Your hearing will go back to normal after the ear infection clears.
- In the long run, neglected hearing loss can affect your brain and your ability to interpret sounds.
- If you have a hearing aid, earwax accumulation can hinder its function as well. You might end up thinking that your hearing is going downhill because of this.
If you observe earwax buildup, it’s definitely not recommended that you dig around in there with a cotton swab. Added damage can be done by cotton swabs and they will often worsen your ability to hear. Alternatively, use over-the-counter ear drops.
Step 2: Avoid Loud Noises
This one should almost be left off the list it’s so intuitive. The problem is that most individuals aren’t entirely certain what a “loud noise” actually is. For example, freeway driving can be loud enough to damage your hearing over an extended period of time. Also, believe it or not, your lawn mower can take a toll on your hearing. Clearly, it’s more than rock concerts or loud speakers that cause hearing impairment.
Some practical ways to escape harmful noises include:
- Using an app on your phone to notify you when volume levels reach harmful thresholds.
- When you can’t avoid loud settings, wear hearing protection. Does your job put you on the floor of a noisy manufacturing plant? Going to see a rock concert? That’s cool. But be sure to wear the correct protection for your ears. Modern earmuffs and earplugs supply abundant protection.
- Staying away from turning the volume up on your headphones when you’re watching videos or listening to music. When dangerous volumes are being approached, most phones have a built in warning.
Damage to the ears from noise doesn’t develop all of a sudden, it builds up gradually. So if you’ve attended a noisy event, you may have done damage even if you don’t notice it. Only a hearing professional can give your hearing a clean bill of health.
Step #3: If You Have Any Hearing Impairment – Have it Treated
Generally speaking, hearing impairment is cumulative. So, the earlier you recognize the damage, the better you’ll be able to prevent further damage. So when it comes to slowing down hearing loss, treatment is so significant. Your hearing will be at the greatest advantage if you find and follow through on effective treatment.
Here’s how treatments work:
- Hearing aids can prevent some, but not all, damage. For example, hearing aids will stop you from turning your television volume up so loud it damages your ears. Because hearing aids counter this damage, they can also stop further deterioration of your hearing.
- Hearing aids prevent the brain strain and social isolation that worsen hearing loss-related health issues.
- We can give personalized instructions and advice to help you avoid added damage to your ears.
Limiting Hearing Impairment Will Benefit You in The Future
Even though it’s true that hearing loss can’t be cured, getting treatment for your hearing loss will help stop further damage. In many situations, hearing aids are one of the main ways to accomplish that. Getting the proper treatment will not only prevent additional damage but also keep your present hearing level in tact.
Your allowing yourself the best chance for healthy hearing into the future by wearing ear protection, getting the correct treatment, and exercising good hearing hygiene.