Early in life, you likely began to associate hearing loss with getting old. You may have had older people around you struggling to hear conversations or using hearing aids.
As you grow up, you start to learn that there is another cause of hearing loss besides aging.
Feeling old is the leading reason why many people don’t want to admit they have hearing loss.
Hearing Loss Is an “Any Age Condition”
By the age of 12, hearing specialists can already identify some hearing loss in 13% of instances. Obviously, someone who is 12 is not “old”. Teenage hearing loss has increased 33% in the past 30 years.
What’s at work here?
Of all 45 – 55-year olds, 2% already suffer from disabling hearing loss, and with 55 – 65-year-olds it’s 8%.
It’s not an aging problem. What you may think of as age-related hearing loss is totally avoidable. And you have the power to significantly decrease the development of your hearing loss.
Age-related hearing loss, known medically as sensorineural hearing loss, is most frequently caused by loud noise.
For generations hearing loss was considered to be inevitable as you get older. But thanks to today’s science we know much more concerning hearing loss prevention and even hearing regeneration.
The Reason why Loud Noise Causes Hearing loss
You need to realize that noise is not harmless if you desire to start to safeguard your hearing.
Sound is composed of waves of pressure. Traveling down into your ear these waves go beyond your eardrum and into the inner ear.
Here, tiny hair cells in your inner ear vibrate. A neurological code is made up of how fast and how regularly these tiny hairs vibrate. Your brain can translate this code into words, the sound of wind, a warning alert, a cry for help or anything else you might hear.
But when the inner ear is exposed to sounds that are too loud, these hair cells shake too fast. They die because the vibrations get to be too loud for them to handle.
If these hairs are lost then so is your hearing.
Hearing Loss Caused by Loud Noise is Permanent
If you cut your body, the injury will heal. These little cells never heal. When they are gone, they are lost forever. The more often you’re exposed to loud sounds, the more of these little cells you lose.
Hearing loss progresses as they die.
Common Noises Which Cause Hearing Damage
Many people are shocked to discover that routine activities may be the cause of hearing loss. You may not question:
- 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 manufacturing plant or other loud profession
- Playing music in a band
You don’t have to quit these activities. It is possible to lessen noise induced hearing damage by taking pro-active measures.
Don’t Allow Hearing Loss Make you Feel old
If you’re already suffering from hearing loss, recognizing it doesn’t need to make you feel older. As a matter of fact, failing to acknowledge it can doom you to faster development 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
It’s significantly more common for people with untreated hearing loss to have problems with one or more of these.
Continued Hearing Damage can be Avoided
The first thing you have to do is learn how to to prevent hearing loss.
- Sound meter apps are readily available for your cellphone which can show you how loud things are.
- Unsafe volumes should be avoided without the correct ear protection. Over 85 dB (decibels) can cause permanent hearing damage in only 8 hours. 110 dB takes around 15 minutes to cause permanent hearing loss. 120 dB and higher causes instant hearing loss. A gunshot is 140 to 170 dB.
- You should know that you have already caused hearing damage if you have had a hard time hearing, or if your ears were ringing, after a concert. As time goes by it will become worse.
- Wear earplugs and/or sound-dampening earmuffs when necessary.
- Follow work hearing safety restrictions.
- Minimize your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Refrain from standing close to loudspeakers or turning speakers up when at home.
- Buy earbuds/headphones that come with built-in volume control. They don’t go over 90 decibels. You would have to listen pretty much non-stop all day to do irreversible damage.
- High blood pressure, not enough blood oxygen, and a few medications tend to cause you to be more susceptible at lower volumes. To be certain, never listen to headphones at over 50%. Car speakers vary.
- Put on your hearing aid. Not using a hearing aid when you need them causes the brain to atrophy. It’s much like your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it gets much harder to start walking again.
Call a Hearing Professional for a Hearing Exam
Are you putting off on it or are in denial? Stop it. You need to be aware so that you can be proactive to decrease further damage.
Consult Your Hearing Professional About Hearing Answers
There are not any “natural cures” for hearing loss. If you have serious hearing loss, it’s time for a hearing aid.
You Should way the Cost Compared to the Benefits of Getting Hearing Aids
Lots of sufferers are either in denial about hearing loss, or, they choose to “tough it out.” They think hearing aids make them seem old. Or maybe they believe they are too expensive.
But when they understand that hearing loss will decline faster and can cause numerous health and personal complications, it’s easy to see that the pros greatly outweigh the cons.
Call a hearing care expert now about getting a hearing evaluation. And if hearing aids are suggested, don’t worry about “feeling old.” Hearing aids nowadays are much more streamlined and more advanced than you probably think!