As we get older we tend to think that hearing loss only has an affect on people of advanced age. You probably had older adults around you struggling to make out words or utilizing hearing aids.
But just as 30 or 60 only seemed old to you up until it swiftly approached, as you learn more regarding hearing loss, you find out that it has less to do with old age and much more to do with something else entirely.
This is the most important thing to know: acknowledging that you have hearing loss doesn’t make you old.
You can Begin Loosing Your Hearing Even When Your Younger
Even before we turn 13, audiologists already begin to identify some hearing loss in 13% of instances. Obviously, someone who is 12 years old is certainly not “old”. Within 3 decades we have seen a 33% rise in teen hearing loss.
What are the key factors involved?
2% of 45 – 55-year-olds and 8% of 55 – 64-year-olds currently have debilitating hearing loss.
The difficulty is not with aging. It’s totally possible to prevent, although the majority of people might consider it an aging problem. Considerably reducing your hearing loss is within reach.
Sensorineural hearing loss, which is the medical name for age-related hearing loss, is in most cases caused by loud noise.
For a long time people have believed that hearing loss was just part of the aging process. But at present, scientists are more knowledgeable concerning how to safeguard your hearing and even restore it.
How Loud Noise Causes Hearing Loss
You should recognize that loud noise is not harmless if you wish to begin to protect your ears.
Sound is composed of waves of pressure. Going down into your ear these waves go past your eardrum and into the inner ear.
Inside of the inner ear little hairs resonate. A neurological code is made up of how fast and how regularly these little hairs vibrate. Your brain can render this code into the sound of peoples voices, traffic sounds, a car horn, a scream or anything else you may hear.
The problem is when the inner ear is exposed to noises that are too loud, these hair cells shake too rapidly. They die because the vibrations get to be too strong for them to deal with.
Without them, you can not hear.
Why Noise-Induced Hearing Loss is Irreversible
If you cut your body, the wound heals. But when you harm these little hair cells, they don’t heal, and they will not ever grow back. The more often you’re exposed to loud sounds, the more of these tiny hair cells die.
Hearing loss progresses as they die.
Hearing Damage can be Caused by Everyday Noises
This is a unexpected thing for most people to learn. It’s easy to discount:
- Going to a concert/play/movie
- Wearing earbuds/head phones
- Turning the car stereo up too loud
- Mowing the lawn
- Using farm equipment
- Riding a motorcycle/snowmobile
- Driving on a busy highway with the windows or top down
- Working in a factory or other loud industry
- Being a musician
These activities don’t need to be given up. Luckily, you can take proactive steps to reduce noise-induced hearing loss.
How you can Keep Hearing Loss From Making You “Feel” old
If you’re already suffering from hearing loss, admitting it doesn’t need to cause you to feel older. Actually, failing to recognize it can doom you to faster progression and complications that will cause you to you feel a lot older in just a few years such as:
- Increased Fall Risk
- Social Isolation
- More frequent trips to the ER
- Strained relationships
For people with untreated hearing loss, suffering from one or more of these is considerably more likely.
How can you Avoid Further Hearing Damage?
The first step is to learn to avoid hearing loss.
- Sound meter apps are available for your cellphone which can show you how loud things are.
- Learn about unsafe volumes. Above 85 dB (decibels) can cause irreversible hearing loss in only 8 hours. 110 dB takes about 15 minutes to cause permanent hearing loss. 120 dB and higher results in instant hearing loss. A gunshot is around 140 to 170 dB.
- You should know that If you’ve ever had trouble hearing briefly immediately after a concert, you already caused permanent damage to your hearing. It will get a lot more obvious as time goes by.
- Use earplugs or maybe sound-dampening earmuffs when necessary.
- Adhere to work hearing safety policies.
- Regulate your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Avoid standing close to loudspeakers or turning speakers up when listening at home.
- Purchase earbuds/headphones which come with built-in volume control. They never go over 90 decibels. You would have to listen almost non-stop all day to cause irreversible damage.
- High blood pressure, low blood oxygen, and various medications tend to cause you to be more susceptible at lower volumes. To be sure, don’t ever listen to headphones at over 50%. Car speakers differ.
- Put on your hearing aid. Not wearing a hearing aid when you require them causes the brain to atrophy. It’s comparable to your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it will be much harder to start walking again.
Make a Hearing Appointment
Are you procrastinating or are in denial? Stop it. The sooner you make the smart decision the less injury you will continue to do.
Talk to Your Hearing Specialist Concerning Hearing Answers
There are no “natural cures” for hearing impairment. If hearing loss is severe, it could be time to purchase a hearing aid.
A Cost-Benefits Analysis is the First Step
Lots of people are either in denial about hearing loss, or maybe, they make the decision to “tough it out.” They think hearing aids will make them seem old. Or they think they are too expensive.
But when they realize that hearing loss will worsen faster and can cause several health and relationship issues, it’s easy to be certain that the pros well outweigh the cons.
Call a hearing care professional today about getting a hearing test. And if hearing aids are recommended, don’t be afraid of “feeling old.” Hearing aids today are much sleeker and more sophisticated than you may think!