As we get older we tend to think that hearing loss only has an affect on people of advanced age. Many of us have past experiences with older people struggling to make out words and phrases, or using hearing aids.
As you grow up, you start to find out that there is an additional factor regarding hearing loss apart from aging.
Here is the most important thing to know: acknowledging that you have hearing loss doesn’t make you old.
You can Begin Loosing Your Hearing at any age
Even in pre-teens, hearing specialists already begin to identify some amount of hearing loss in 13% of instances. You’ll recognize, this is not because 12-year-olds are “old”. Teenage hearing loss has increased 33% within the last 3 decades.
What’s at work here?
2% of 45 – 55-year-olds and 8% of 55 – 64-year-olds currently have debilitating hearing loss.
The difficulty is not with aging. What you might consider age-related hearing loss is absolutely avoidable. And you have the power to dramatically lessen the progression of your hearing loss.
Sensorineural hearing loss, which is the medical terminology for age-related hearing loss, is commonly triggered by loud noise.
For decades hearing loss was considered to be inevitable when you get older. But today, scientists know more concerning how to protect your hearing and even restore it.
How Noise Causes Hearing Loss
You need to comprehend that loud noise is not harmless if you really want to start to safeguard your ears.
Waves of pressure are what makeup sound. These waves travel into your ear canal. They travel downward beyond your eardrum into your inner ear.
Here, little hair cells in your inner ear vibrate. Which hair cells vibrate, and how fast or frequently they vibrate, become a neurological code. Your brain can turn this code into conversations, traffic sounds, a warning alert, a cry or whatever else you might hear.
The problem is when the inner ear is exposed to noises that are too loud, these hair cells shake too fast. The noise shakes them until they die.
When these hairs are gone then so is your hearing.
Hearing Loss Caused by Loud Sound is not Reversible
Most kinds of damage can be healed by your body. These little cells do not heal. When they are gone, they are gone permanently. Each and every time you are exposed to loud noise, a few more of these cells are lost for ever.
As they die, hearing loss advances.
There are Sounds That are Common Which Will Cause Hearing Loss
Many people are surprised to discover that routine activities might be the cause of hearing loss. It’s easy to overlook:
- 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 industry
- Being a musician
It’s not necessary to give up these activities. The good thing is, you can take proactive steps to reduce noise-related hearing loss.
You Don’t Need to Feel old Just Because you Have Hearing Loss
If you already suffer from hearing loss, recognizing it does not have to make you feel older. The longer you dismiss it, the worse it’s going to get, and you will wind up feeling older much sooner because of:
- Increased Fall Risk
- Social Isolation
- More frequent trips to the ER
- Strained relationships
These are all considerably more common in people with untreated hearing loss.
How can you Stop Continued Hearing Damage?
Begin by learning how to avoid hearing damage.
- Find out how loud everyday sounds really are by getting a sound meter app on your smart-phone.
- Learn about dangerous volumes. More than 85 dB (decibels) can cause permanent hearing loss in just 8 hours. 110 dB takes around 15 minutes to cause irreversible hearing loss. 120 dB and above will cause immediate hearing loss. A gunshot is around 140 to 170 dB.
- Understand that If you have ever had trouble hearing temporarily immediately after a concert, you already caused permanent damage to your hearing. It will become more obvious as time goes by.
- Wear earplugs and/or sound-dampening earmuffs when appropriate.
- Observe workplace hearing protection restrictions.
- Limit your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Refrain from standing close to loudspeakers or turning speakers up when at home.
- Invest in earbuds/headphones which have integrated volume control. They don’t go higher 90 decibels. Most people would have to listen pretty much non-stop all the time to cause irreversible damage.
- High blood pressure, low blood oxygen, and various medications tend to make you more vulnerable at lower volumes. To be safe, never 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 a lot like your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it gets much more difficult to start walking again.
Schedule an Appointment With a Hearing Expert
Are you in denial or putting off on it? Stop it. You need to know so you can become proactive to minimize further damage.
Get in touch with Your Hearing Professional About Hearing Answers
There are no “natural cures” for hearing damage. If you have extreme hearing loss, it’s time for a hearing aid.
A Cost-Benefits Assessment is the First Step
Many sufferers are either in denial about hearing loss, or, they choose to “tough it out.” They feel that hearing aids will make them seem old. Or maybe they believe that they are too expensive.
But as soon as they understand that hearing loss will become worse faster and can cause several health and personal issues, it’s simple to be certain that the pros well outweigh the cons.
Consult a hearing care expert now about getting a hearing test. And if hearing aids are needed, don’t worry about “feeling old.” Hearing aids at present are much sleeker and more sophisticated than you probably think!
Hearing aids are a worthy purchase. It’s a question many people suffering from hearing loss ask when they look at the price tag of hearing aids. But, despite the fact that a home is an expensive purchase, it’s much better than being homeless. The true worth of hearing aids is about a lot more than the price.
You should question, before shopping for high priced items, “what is the cost of not getting hearing aids and what will I realistically get from them?” If you actually need hearing aids it will end up costing you more if you don’t invest in them. These costs need to factor into your decision also. Think about some reasons why purchasing hearing aids will save you money long term.
Inexpensive Hearing Aids Become More Expensive Than You Might Think
While browsing the hearing aids market, you will definitely find less expensive models which seem to be more affordable. You could even pick up a hearing aid from the internet costing even less than a dinner.
You get what you pay for in quality with over-the-counter hearing devices. When you buy these devices, you’re really buying an amplification device much like earbuds, not an actual hearing aid. The trouble with these cheap devices is that they turn the background noises up.
With cheap hearing devices you don’t get the most important features, such as customized programming. You can experience a high degree of quality by having your good hearing aid keyed to address your specific hearing requirements.
The majority of over-the-counter hearing devices are powered by equally cheap batteries, too. Having to swap worn out batteries on a regular basis can get expensive. You could even have to change the batteries more than once every day. The battery is also going to quit working when you most need it, too, so prepare on carrying several of spares around with you everywhere you go. Do you actually save cash if you need to replace worn out batteries every day?
Because the technology is better, the batteries live longer. Rechargeable batteries in the high-quality hearing aids means no more spending money on batteries.
Work Related Worries
If you require hearing aids and you decide not to get them, or if you choose cheaper ones, it will cost you at your job. A 2013 study published in The Hearing Journal says that adults with hearing loss often earn less money – as much as 25 percent less, and are more likely to be without a job.
Why is this? There are quite a few reasons for this, but the most common sense explanation is that communicating is critical in pretty much every industry. You have to listen to what your boss is saying to be able to give good results. You should be capable of listening to customers to help them. If you spend the discussion trying to hear exactly what words people are saying, you’re likely to miss out on the total message. Put simply, if you can’t take part in conversations, it is very hard to succeed at work.
The battle to hear what people are saying at the workplace exacts a toll on you physically, also. And if you do find a way to get through a day with sub-par hearing, the stress that comes with worrying about whether you heard everything right plus the energy required to make out just enough will make you depleted and stressed. Stress impacts:
- Your immune system
- Your ability to sleep
- Your relationships
- Your quality of life
All of these have the possibility to have an impact on your job efficiency and decrease your income as a result.
Having to go to the ER more often
There are safety issues which come with loss of hearing. Without correct hearing aids, it is hazardous for you to cross the street or operate a car or truck. How could you avoid another vehicle if you can’t hear it? How about public warning systems like a twister alert or smoke detector?
For a number of jobs, hearing is a must for workplace safety such as building and construction zones or processing factories. That means that not using hearing aids is not just a safety hazard but something that can restrict your career possibilities.
Financial safety comes into play here, as well. Did the waitress tell you that you owe 25 dollars or 85? What did the salesperson say about the features on the Television you are looking at and do you need them? Maybe the lower cost model would be all you would need, but it’s hard to know if you can’t hear the clerk discuss the difference.
One of the most crucial problems that come with hearing loss is the increased danger of dementia. The New England Journal of Medicine states that Alzheimer’s disease costs people more than 56,000 dollars per year. Dementia makes up about 11 billion dollars in Medicare costs every year.
Hearing loss is a recognized risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and various other forms of dementia. It has been calculated that a person with acute, untreated hearing loss increases their chances of brain degeneration by five fold. A moderate hearing loss carries three times the danger of dementia, and even a slight hearing issue doubles your chances. Hearing aids will bring the danger back to a regular amount.
There is little doubt that a hearing aid will set you back a bit. When you look at all the problems associated with going without one or buying a cheaper device, it’s definitely a smart financial investment. Make an appointment with a hearing aid specialist to find out more.
Playing in the water, holidays, and a lot of good things to eat are some of the things that come along with summer. There are specific foods that move to the top of the list when summer comes. Some of these delicious treats may provide relief from tinnitus. Ultimately, tinnitus is not really about what you consume; it’s associated with how well you hear. What you eat might still play an important role however. Consider seven summer treats that might help with your tinnitus.
For most hearing loss is the true explanation for tinnitus. Clicking, buzzing, or ringing, are noises you might start to hear as your hearing declines. Tinnitus is poorly understood, but it’s feasible that this is the brain’s way of dealing with the loss of sound.
There is no cure for it and no way to eradicate the phantom noises entirely. Your best hope is finding ways to control it. This can be accomplished with:
- Amplification devices like hearing aids
- Masking devices such as white noise machines
- Relaxation techniques
- Diet and lifestyle changes
What You Shouldn’t Eat When You Have Tinnitus
What you don’t eat this summer is just as relevant as what you do if you hope to control your tinnitus. Here are some foods to avoid:
- Salty meals
- Processed sugar
- Flavor enhancers like MSG
- Fatty foods
The results of your dietary habits on your health as well as your tinnitus this summertime is something to think about.
Try These Seven Tasty Summertime Treats to Minimize Your Tinnitus
This summertime what can you eat that will help out your tinnitus? These are seven suggestions for you to try.
1. Chicken on the Barbecue
One option for a delicious and healthy summertime meal is barbecued chicken. Because it’s very tasty you don’t even need to have much salt. Being high in vitamin B12 means that barbecued chicken can help reduce tinnitus.
Keep in mind these few things when barbecuing chicken:
Prior to barbecuing take off the skin. The fat hides in the skin.
Be certain to thoroughly wash your hands and counter surfaces just after handling raw chicken.
While cooking chicken be certain you have the grill hot. That better seals in the taste and makes certain the meat reaches a safe temperature of 170 degrees.
2. Frozen Bananas
Bananas at any time of the year are a sweet snack, but, in the summer, pop them in the freezer to make them refreshing, too. Just simply peel your bananas, push a pop stick into the bottom and freeze.
You can even put chocolate or peanut butter on to them before freezing. The bodily fluids are helped by the high amounts of potassium in bananas which then helps lessen tinnitus.
Pineapple is a natural anti-inflammatory, so it could possibly be helpful for people that suffer from tinnitus. It’s an adaptable fruit, too. Raw it makes a tasty treat and is excellent in desserts. You can freeze it in juice to make a fruity popsicle or add a slice to a glass of iced tea for flavor. Pineapple is even delicious on the grill by itself, to garnish meat or as part of a kabob.
Watermelon is a fun means to improve your fluid consumption and cool yourself down simultaneously. It also contains antioxidants which benefit your general wellness and reduce your risk of getting ill. Watermelon is high in:
- Vitamin C
- Pantothenic acid
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin B1
It has no fat and few calories, making it the perfect summer treat.
5. Iced Tea With Ginger
There is some research which shows that ginger may assist in relieving pressure levels inside of the ear which may trigger tinnitus. It becomes a tasty and refreshing summer drink when you incorporate it with a couple different other spices. Beginning by boiling one teaspoon of:
Steep three pieces of fresh ginger in four cups of water for 15 minutes. After the tea cools pour it over ice. Experiment with it some, for instance adding a lemon slice to suit your personal preference.
Help lower your blood pressure by eating kiwi. It’s high in calcium, magnesium, potassium and it also contains more vitamin C than a similarly sized orange. Barbecued meats, desserts and salads are all complemented by this fuzzy brown fruit. You may even drop a slice in your favorite summer drink to give it a distinctive flavor.
The avocado is a super-food that is beneficial for your heart, as well as helping to control your tinnitus. Just one-half avocado gives you:
- 1 percent of your daily recommended intake of calcium
- 5 percent of your daily recommended intake of magnesium
- 10 percent of your daily recommended intake of potassium
It also contains beneficial fats and carotenoids to fight infection. The drawback to the avocado is calories, so a small amount goes a long way. Add it to your favorite summertime salad dish.
This summer season, go out and enjoy some sensible, healthy goodies. Your ears might just thank you by ringing less.
It’s not always easy to make healthy decisions. Usually our reluctance can be overcome if we remind ourselves what is good for us. But is it possible that our health habits may actually harm our ears? Actually it’s more common than you would believe.
Day To Day Health Routines
When you go out, you want people to notice how good you appear, and how well you take care of yourself. Like most everyone, you probably put on something sharp, brush your teeth, comb your hair, and maybe, clean your ears.
With time an aggravating trickle of a small amount of earwax can build up. Earwax does have several vital functions, in spite of that, it does need to be taken out now and then. There are some procedures of eliminating earwax which can be harmful.
If you are using cotton swabs you should quit as these are not the proper tool for the job. Permanent harm can be done by using cotton swabs to eliminate your earwax. The better choice would be to consult a hearing specialist for help. It’s a standard and simple solution for them to clear away the wax and you can rest assured that your hearing is safe.
Your Workout Habits
Staying physically fit is the best way to look and feel your best. The benefits of exercising are that it gets your blood flowing, clears your mind, helps you lose weight, and relaxes your muscles. The problem is people don’t always do their workouts correctly.
It’s becoming more prominent to do stamina testing, high impact workouts. While that may possibly help you to build your muscle, if you’re participating in these kinds of exercises you may possibly be straining your body and your ears. Strenuous exercise can cause a build up of pressure in the ears. Balance and hearing problems can be the result.
This doesn’t mean quitting your workouts is the right answer. You just need to make sure you’re doing it right. Avoid strain and don’t hold your breath while exercising. Stop when you have reached your limit.
Your Prospering Career
Having a successful career commonly means having a lot of stress. While working hard to achieve career accomplishment is great, research shows that the pressure that accompanies it can be harmful to your health.
Stress has been known to cause weight gain, impaired thinking, and muscle pain, but did you know it can also cause hearing loss? The issue is actually the poor blood flow caused by stress. When you have poor blood flow the delicate hairs in your ears don’t get the blood flow and oxygen they need. When the hairs in your ear die, they won’t grow back. Why are these little hairs important? Your brain uses them to hear. Because without having them your brain has no way to receive sound waves.
However, you can keep your career and your hearing. Blood flow can be increased when you use tactics to decrease stress. Taking breaks from tense situations is a must. If you have time, read or watch something humorous. When you laugh, you naturally shake off your stress.
Enjoying the Arts
Exposing your mind to all forms of art is a healthy practice. However, there’s a difference for your ears whether you’re going to an art gallery or visiting the movies.
We usually underestimate how loud going to the movies or attending a concert can be. While enjoying our favorite art form we usually don’t worry about whether it is harming our hearing. Unfortunately it might be.
This is simply solved. Make sure you protect your ears if you are planning on attending a loud event. Earmuffs may look silly at a production of Phantom of the Opera, but there are plenty of discreet in-ear noise reduction products that you can pack in your pocket.
Being prepared and informed is always the best safeguard. Schedule a hearing test with a specialist if you think you may have already suffered hearing injuries from a high volume activity. Only then will you know for certain.
What do people in this country do on their days off? You can understand more about a person by looking at the things they do to relax. For instance, the American Time Use Survey produced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics states you are able to judge how much a person makes if you know their favorite hobby. It seems the more money you have, the more free time you spend improving your appearance at the gym, jogging or playing games on the weekend. Clearly, there is a major difference between the person who jumps out of a plane for fun and the one who hits the golf course once a week, right? The skydiver is looking for adventure, and the other person wants a life without the adrenaline surge.
These same things you do to relax relate to your hearing health, as well. You think what you enjoy on your days off is fun but what is it doing to your ears? Take some time to think about what you like to do and how it might affect your hearing.
Could a Hobby Lead to Hearing Problems?
When it comes down to it, noise is the major culprit in hearing loss. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, noise that falls at a certain volume level will damage to the delicate mechanisms of the ear like:
- Hair cells
Sound goes into the ear in a wave. How strong that wave depends on different factors like volume and distance, which are two of the most important. The sound goes through the ear canal to be amplified by the eardrum, or tympanic membrane, as it enters the middle ear.
In the middle ear, three small bones work together to transmit the vibrations caused by the amplified sound wave to a flexible membrane that sits on the cusp of the inner ear. The combination of the bones and the membrane strengthen the sound even more.
The vibration caused by this stronger sound wave vibrates the fluid in the cochlea, a chamber in the inner ear. When that happens, the movement sways the tiny, and very delicate, hair cells to create a kind of electrical message. Simply put, the hair cells translate this sound wave into something the brain can understand. Once it gets that electrical signal, the brain can tell you what you are hearing.
For example, think about when you turn the radio on in the car. The music goes into the ears as a sound wave with the help of the pinna, or outer ear. The wave is strengthened by the tympanic membrane to move the small bones, so they can vibrate the membrane at the entrance to the cochlea. This membrane moves the fluid in the cochlea which causes the hair cells to send an electrical message to the brain. The brain decodes the message and sends a signal that tells you there is music playing. All the happens in a nanosecond and without you even having to think about it. Not only do you hear the sound, you understand it, you know what direction it is coming from and whether you enjoy or hate it.
What If You Turn the Volume Up
Now, consider someone running in the park wearing headphones. It’s a little bit like firing a gun from point blank range. The sound wave that goes the ear is already loud, maybe enough to damage the eardrum. It’s certainly strong enough to cause the bones in the middle ear to move dangerously fast, creating a larger wave in the fluid of the inner ear; one that will eventually break the hair cells.
Maybe your favorite hobby is riding a motorcycle. The sound caused by the engine roar is will lead to similar damage. Decibel (dB) is the measurement associated with sound. Any noise above 85 dB can mean hearing loss. The average motorcycle engine generates around 100 dB of sound. The traffic you hear when driving in your car to the golf course is around 85 dB. The lawn mower comes in at about 107 dB.
What Hobbies can Mean the Most Hearing Damage
Anything you do that involves sound over 85 dB is a trouble. Everyday conversation or music playing at a sensible volume measures at about 70 dB; just to give you an idea of what sounds are a problem. Some of the common hobbies that can damage the ear include:
- Motorcycle riding
- Home Improvement
- Sporting or music events
- Driving with the top down
Add to this list the things you do with headphones or earbuds in place including video games or listening to music.
What Should You Do To Protect Your Hearing
You don’t have to give up the fun things to keep your ears safe, just be smart about what you do. First and foremost, don’t wear headphones or earbuds for anything. If your hobby requires you to used drills or hammer, wear hearing protection such as ear plugs or muffs. If you love live music at a sports arena or local bar, consider musician earplugs that preserve sound quality but reduce the noise exposure.
You only have two ears, so do right by them. Go ahead and have some fun on your day off, just turn down the volume.
Call us today to cut through the confusion about hearing loss and hearing aids.
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