Rounding out Better Hearing and Speech Month is Save Your Hearing Day on May 31.
Save Your Hearing Day is meant to remind us of the ways we can prevent some causes of hearing loss.
Hearing loss can be caused by many factors, including age, noise exposure, genetics, illnesses and disorders, medications or physical trauma. Despite the many and varied causes of hearing loss, the American Academy of Audiology estimates that up to half of cases of impairment are preventable.
Noise-induced hearing loss is completely preventable and occurs when the hair cells in the cochlea, or inner ear, are damaged by exposure to loud noise.
Here are some simple actions you can take to help prevent certain kinds of hearing loss:
- Be careful using ear bud headphones, and always heed warnings from your device about high volume.
- Pay attention to how long and how often you’re listening to music on your devices, and try to reduce that time. For example, perhaps you listen to loud music while working out at the gym several times a week.
- Ask your doctor whether hearing loss or tinnitus is a possible side effect when prescribed a new medication.
- Wear ear protection when you know you will be exposed to loud noise, like at a concert, at a sporting event, or when working around construction.
- Store hearing protection in noisy vehicles you may use. For example, in a motorcycle pack or in storage on a motorboat.
- Consider purchasing appliances and devices for your home with low noise ratings.
- If you are exposed to noise at work, talk to your supervisor or human resources department about ear protection and controlling noise in your work environment.
- Schedule routine hearing check-ups with a health professional so you can track your hearing health yearly.
Did you know the sound from a sporting event can damage your hearing after just a few minutes? This video gives a good overview of the way some of the sounds we’re commonly exposed to can affect our hearing:
Is it time for your next hearing check-up? Click here to find a clinic near you.