Isn’t pizza interesting? As long as a few factors are met, you can adjust toppings, cheese, and sauce, and it’s still a pizza. Hearing loss is a lot like that. Symptoms and presentations are caused by numerous different issues, loud noises, genetic factors, age, or ear obstructions, but as long as you have a hard time detecting sounds, it’s still hearing loss.
Frequently, when you’re facing hearing loss (no matter the variety), the first thing you need to do is attempt to minimize the damage. There are, after all, some basic steps you can take to protect your hearing and minimize further hearing loss.
Tip 1: Keep your ears clean
Did you clean behind your ears? It’s one of those childhood hygiene lessons you learn, or should have learned, right? But it’s inside of your ears that we’re worried about here, in terms of hearing health, not the back of your ears.
Keeping your ears clear of wax accumulation can help your hearing in a variety of different ways:
- Sound waves going to your ears can be blocked when a significant amount of earwax accumulates. When this happens you won’t be able to hear as well.
- Earwax buildup also impedes the operation of your hearing aid if you have one. This could make it seem as though your hearing is getting worse.
- Your chance of developing an ear infection is elevated if your ears aren’t kept clean and that can cause inflammation which will interfere with your hearing. When your ear infection clears, your normal hearing will normally come back (but that’s something you should talk to a doctor about).
If you find earwax accumulation, it’s absolutely not suggested that you poke around in there with a cotton swab. In most situations, a cotton swab will make things worse or cause added damage. Instead, use over-the-counter ear drops.
Tip 2: Very loud sounds should be averted
This is so evident that it sort of goes without saying. But what precisely constitutes a “loud sound”? For instance, highway travel can be loud enough to harm your ears over a long period of time. Your ears can also be harmed by frequent usage of your lawn mower. Clearly, other things besides rock concerts or blaring speakers can damage your ears.
Some useful ways to avoid harmful noises include:
- Using ear protection when loud settings are necessary. Do you work on a loud industrial floor? Do you really want to attend that rock concert? That’s awesome. But you need to use the correct ear protection. You can get enough protection with modern earmuffs and earplugs.
- Using an app on your phone to alert you when volumes reach hazardous thresholds.
- When you’re listening to music or viewing videos, keep the volume of your headphones at safe levels. Most phones include built-in warnings when you’re approaching a hazardous threshold.
The damage to your ears from loud sounds will accumulate gradually. So don’t just assume that your hearing is okay after a loud event, even if it feels fine. We can only help you figure out if you have hearing loss if you call for an appointment.
Tip 3: If you have any hearing loss, deal with it
In most instances, hearing loss develops slowly over an extended period of time. You’ll be in a better position to avoid further damage if you recognize your hearing loss early on. That’s why treatment is tremendously important when it comes to limiting hearing loss. Your hearing will be in the best position if you get treatment and follow through with it.
Here’s how treatments work:
- Hearing aids prevent the brain strain and social isolation that worsen hearing loss-related health conditions.
- Some, but not all damage can be avoided by wearing hearing aids. If you’re wearing hearing aids, for instance, you won’t always need to turn volumes up to harmful levels. Because hearing aids prevent this damage, they can also stop further impairment of your hearing.
- When you come in and see us we will provide personalized instructions and advice to help you steer clear of further damage to your ears.
In the long run, you will be helped by using hearing aids
Despite the fact that we can’t cure hearing loss, we are putting in hard work to help you minimize further damage. In many instances, hearing loss treatment is one of the primary ways to accomplish that. The right treatment will help you preserve your current level of hearing and prevent it from getting worse.
You’re taking the proper steps to minimize hearing loss and put yourself in the best situation to continue to have healthy hearing if you practice good hygiene, use ear protection, and come see us for regular hearing exams.