The Importance of Protecting Your Ears for Long Term Health
More often than not, people take hearing health for granted until it is too late. That’s why it is crucial to raise awareness to prevent hearing loss if diagnosed early. The ears are just as necessary to the body as any of the other senses.
What destroys hearing may seem harmless, so more people should know how one can protect the ears from all sources of damage. There are a lot of ways you can protect your ears to avoid hearing damage.
Exposure to different types of sounds at different levels is inevitable every day. Some may be pleasing to the ears, and some may cause damage. Frequent exposure to loud noises for an extended period are sure ways to hearing impairment. Working in factories that use noisy machinery and power tools daily poses a risk of damaged hearing. Regularly subjecting your ears to loud sounds can cause hearing damage. It might be useful to consider purchasing ear protection solutions such as earplugs to protect your ears.
Turn the volume down. Music may be pleasing to the ears, however loud and long-term exposure to sounds can eventually damage your ears. Prolonged use of headphones, especially at high volume, is observed to be one of the leading causes of hearing loss these days. When listening to music, always turn the volume to a safe level. During concerts, avoid areas near the speakers to escape the loudest noise. Bring a set of earplugs that you can use to rest your ears from the loud sounds.
Unsafe use of audio devices such as earbuds places the risk of hearing loss, especially to young adults and teenagers. Of the sound devices used these days, earbuds are the riskiest because they fit next to the eardrum. To lessen the risk of damaging your hearing, opt for over-the-ear headphones. You can also protect your ears by following the recommendation of 60/60 rule. You can listen to your headphones for a maximum of 60 minutes a day with no more than 60% volume.
It is also essential to protect your ears from a bacterial infection, which can also cause damage to hearing. Bacteria can thrive in the ears when it is kept moist. After swimming or bathing, towel dry your ears, avoid swimmer’s ear or other ear infection. Wearing custom-fit swimmer’s earplugs can prevent water from entering the ear canal.
Having clean ears is vital, but daily cleaning of ears is ill-advised. You should know that ears are self-cleaning organs, and a bit of wax in the ear canal is critical. This natural wax inside the ears keeps dirt and dust from entering the ear canal. Do not use cotton swabs to clean ear wax, instead, use a damp cloth to remove excess wax from your ears. Also, you can seek the help of a physician to advise you on the proper way to clean and care for your ears.
Stress and anxiety can also cause temporary or permanent ear defects called tinnitus, a phantom ringing of the ears. When a person is under a lot of stress, the body goes into a fight or flight mode, putting a lot of pressure on the nerves and blood flow. This pressure can cause ringing in the inner ear, which is called tinnitus. Protecting yourself from stress is protecting your ears from getting damaged.
Some chemicals and drugs can also cause damage to the ears called ototoxicity. Medicines such as aspirin and some medications for malaria may cause temporary hearing loss. Some chemical substances, such as solvents, are also believed to cause hearing damage. Protect yourself from chemical or medication-induced hearing loss, take your medicines only as prescribed by the doctor. See your doctor immediately if you experience tinnitus during a course of medications. For chemical-related hearing impairment, talk to your occupational health and safety officer to discuss ways to reduce exposure to such harmful chemicals.
The risk of hearing damage is usually underrated, but since there are more and more cases of hearing loss observed lately, raising awareness on impending hearing loss is very crucial.
A good recommendation is to have a hearing test included in your annual medical exams or regular visits to the doctor. Loss of hearing is a gradual process, and once affected, you can never get it back. Annual hearing consultations with hearing medical experts can help you detect signs of hearing loss for you to take immediate action.
Do not downplay the importance of early diagnosis for you to change bad habits that can accelerate your hearing loss. Protecting your ears from getting damaged is vital because the loss of hearing is also related to severe health problems such as depression, heart ailments, and dementia. Early diagnosis can also help you with your options in choosing the right ear protection solutions before it is too late.