Early in life, you most likely started to connect hearing loss with getting old. You probably had older people around you struggling to understand words or utilizing hearing aids.
As you begin to get older, you begin to realize that there is a different cause of hearing loss apart from aging.
This is the most important thing you should know: recognizing that you have hearing loss isn’t going to make you old.
You can Begin to Lose Your Hearing at any age
Even before we turn 13, hearing specialists can already diagnose some amount of hearing loss in 13% of cases. Obviously, a person who is 12 is certainly not “old”. In the past 3 decades we have seen a 33% increase in teen hearing loss.
What are the key factors involved?
2% of 45 – 55-year-olds and 8% of 55 – 64-year-olds already have debilitating hearing loss.
It’s not an aging problem. It’s 100% possible to avoid, even though the majority of people may consider it an aging problem. And you have the power to drastically lessen the advancement of your hearing loss.
Sensorineural hearing loss, which is the medical term for age-related hearing loss, is typically brought on by loud noise.
For a long time people have assumed that hearing loss was simply part of getting old. But at present, we are more knowledgeable concerning how to safeguard your hearing and also restore it.
How Hearing Loss is Caused by Loud Noise
The first step to protecting your ears is understanding how something as “innocent” as loud noise can cause hearing loss.
Sound is made up of waves of pressure. Traveling down into your ear these waves go past your eardrum and into the inner ear.
Here, little hair cells in your inner ear resonate. Which hair cells vibrate, and how quickly or frequently they vibrate, become a neurological code. This code will be translated by your brain into the sound of crickets, someone yelling for help, a waterfall, or any other sound which might be around you.
The problem is that when noises become too loud these little hairs are injured beyond repair. They die because the vibrations get to be too loud for them to handle.
When these hairs are lost then so is your hearing.
Hearing Loss Triggered by Loud Sound is not Reversible
Lots of types of injury can be healed by your body. These little cells never heal. When they are gone, they are lost permanently. The more you’re subjected to loud sounds, the more tiny hair cells die.
Hearing loss advances as they die.
Hearing Injury is Caused by Common Noises
Most people are shocked to find out that everyday activities may be the cause of hearing loss. You may not think twice about:
- Going to a concert/play/movie
- Wearing earbuds/head phones
- Turning the car stereo way up
- Mowing the lawn
- Using farm equipment
- Riding a motorcycle/snowmobile
- Driving on a busy highway with the windows or top down
- Working in a manufacturing plant or other loud industry
- Playing music in a band
These activities don’t need to be given up. Thankfully, you can take positive measures to reduce noise-induced hearing loss.
You Don’t Have to Feel old Simply Because you Have Hearing Loss
You can admit that you’re suffering from hearing loss without having to feel older. As a matter of fact, failing to accept it can doom you to faster development and problems that will definitely cause you to you feel much older in only a few short years including:
- Increased Fall Risk
- Social Isolation
- More frequent trips to the ER
- Strained relationships
For people with untreated hearing loss, these are significantly more likely.
Stop Further Hearing Injury
The first thing you have to do is learn how to to prevent hearing loss.
- Get a sound meter app on your phone, and find out how loud things actually are.
- Damaging volumes should be avoided without proper ear protection. Over 85 dB (decibels) can cause irreversible hearing damage in only 8 hours. 110 dB takes about 15 minutes to cause permanent hearing loss. 120 dB and higher results in immediate hearing loss. A gunshot is 140 to 170 dB.
- Understand that If you have ever had difficulty hearing briefly following a concert, you already caused permanent damage to your hearing. As time goes by it will become worse.
- Use earplugs or maybe sound-dampening earmuffs when appropriate.
- Respect workplace hearing protection guidelines.
- Regulate your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Steer clear of standing close to loudspeakers or turning speakers up at home.
- Purchase earbuds/headphones which come with integrated volume control. These never go over 90 decibels. You would have to listen nearly non-stop all day to do irreversible damage.
- High blood pressure, low blood oxygen, and various medications tend to make you more susceptible at lower volumes. To be safe, don’t ever listen to headphones at over 50%. Car speakers differ.
- Wear your hearing aid. Not wearing a hearing aid if you require them causes the brain to atrophy. It’s similar to your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it gets much harder to walk.
Get a Hearing Test
Are you procrastinating or are in denial? Stop it. The sooner you make the wise decision the less injury you will keep doing.
Speak to Your Hearing Specialist Regarding Hearing Solutions
There are no “natural cures” for hearing impairment. If hearing loss is severe, it could be time to get a hearing aid.
You Should way the Cost Against the Benefits of Investing In Hearing Aids
Lots of people are either in denial about hearing loss, or, they choose to “tough it out.” They believe that hearing aids will make them feel old. Or perhaps they believe they are too expensive.
However as soon as they realize that hearing loss will deteriorate faster and can cause several health and personal difficulties, it’s simple to see that the pros far outweigh the cons.
Call a hearing care specialist today about getting a hearing evaluation. And if hearing aids are advisable, don’t worry about “feeling old.” Hearing aids at present are much more streamlined and more advanced than you may think!