NIHL, or noise-induced hearing loss, is considered the only preventable cause of hearing loss. While a person may adjust to the louder sounds and noises over time, the brain and ears will not. Once an individual has lost their hearing due to exposure to loud sounds, which is called NIHL, the hearing will not recover.
Usually, NIHL is gradual. By the time a person even notices it, there is nothing they can do to reverse the damage. That is why everyone should take steps to protect their hearing. Some tips to help with this can be found here.
Companies like earpeace.com provide high-quality earplugs and ear protection devices for people in loud environments. The louder the noise is, and the longer a person is exposed to it, the more likely they are to experience permanent damage to their hearing.
With earmuffs, earplugs, and ear protectors, it is possible to protect hearing. It is also a good idea to get away from loud noise quickly or as much as possible. If it is not possible to leave the area where the noise is, take breaks. Just a 10-minute break from the noise will let a person’s ears recover.
Turn the Music Down
Never listen to personal music players at higher volumes, and do not use those devices to cover noise in the background. If the music is at an uncomfortable level to listen to, or if it is impossible to hear any external sounds with the headphones on, it means that music is too loud. It is also too loud if someone nearby can hear the sounds coming from the headphones.
Get to Know the Warning Signs
It is often helpful to learn what the warning signs are that you have been or are being exposed to too much sound. This will let you know it is time to remove yourself from the potentially harmful situation.
A common warning sign to look for is buzzing or ringing in the ears. If this happens, leaving the area where the loud noise is will help ensure permanent damage does not occur.
When it comes to hearing loss warning signs, there are other signs of being aware of, too. It is a good idea to speak with an ear or hearing professional for more information.
Follow the 60:60 Rule
Enjoying music from a smartphone or another personal device is possible, but it is essential to do this safely. This is where the 60:60 Rule comes in. What this means is that a person should listen to their music at 60% of the max volume for under 60 minutes per day. Virtually all devices today come with a “smart volume” feature, so it is a good idea to pay attention to this. It will help a person regulate the volume.
Consider the Environment
Work and individual recreational activities are some of the top causes of noise exposure for many people. An individual’s daily environment may be, too. For example, if someone lives in a larger city, they may be exposed to loud noises regularly and not even realize it. It is a good idea to wear earplugs when going around a big city or noise-canceling headphones. This will help reduce possible damage to a person’s hearing.
Turn the Dial Down
It is a good idea to turn down the volume on a person’s radio, TV, or personal listening device. Even a smaller reduction in the volume will make a significant difference to the possibility of damaged hearing. If a person needs to raise the level of their voice to be heard over the sound, it needs to be turned down.
Invest in Regular Hearing Screenings and Checkups
Most people go to their general physician regularly. They may also have their eyes checked. The same concept applies to a person’s hearing. It is a good idea to see hearing evaluations every 10 years until the age of 50, then every three years after that point. If a person has noticeable hearing issues, scheduling hearing evaluations more often may be necessary.
Do Not Deal Only with Work Noise
If someone is exposed to a lot of noise at work, be sure to talk to the human resources department or the manager. Ask them for advice on how to reduce the noise or if they will provide hearing protection.
Use Caution in the Car
Listening to music while in a confined space is going to increase the possibility of hearing damage. Try not to listen to the music for too long or at too high a volume.
Consider a Hearing Detox
It is crucial to give the ears a break after they are exposed to loud noise. According to information from Action on Hearing Loss, it is a good idea to ensure 16 hours, or more, of recovery and rest for the ears to recover after spending about two hours in 100dB of sound. This is usually the approximately sound level in the typical club environment. If someone does not take this much time to let their hearing recover, it may increase the possibility of permanent hearing loss.
Use Earplugs While Listening to Live Music
Earplugs are effective at reducing sound levels by 15 to 35 decibels. It is possible to purchase earplugs from a variety of locations. For example, some live music venues will provide these for sale for concertgoers.
If the venue does not provide earplugs, then taking them along is highly recommended. There is no reason to risk a hearing loss while having a good time.
Protecting a Person’s Hearing at Every Stage in Life
When it comes to a person’s hearing, many issues may arise. It is a good idea to use the information here for everyone, of all ages, to protect their hearing. Remember, loud sounds are the only cause of completely preventable hearing loss.
Remember, in some cases, hearing loss occurs naturally as a person gets older. This type of hearing loss will not be prevented with the measures here.
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