As we age we tend to think that hearing loss only affects people of advanced age. Most of us have past experiences with older people struggling to hear conversations, or utilizing hearing aids.
But just like 30 or 60 only seemed old to you up until it fast drew near, as you discover more about hearing loss, you find out that it has much less to do with old age and a lot more to do with something else.
Here is the one thing to know: Admitting that you have hearing loss will not make you old.
It Doesn’t Make Any Difference what your age is, you Might Still Have Hearing Loss
By the age of 12, audiologists already begin to diagnose some hearing loss in 13% of cases. Obviously, a person who is 12 is certainly not “old”. Within 30 years there has been a 33% rise in teenage hearing loss.
What’s at work here?
Out of all 45 – 55-year olds, 2% already suffer from debilitating hearing loss, and with 55 – 65-year-olds it’s 8%.
The difficulty is not with getting old. What you might think of as age-related hearing loss is totally avoidable. Dramatically lessening your hearing loss is within reach.
Age-related hearing loss, referred to medically as sensorineural hearing loss, is most frequently instigated by loud noise.
For generations hearing loss was believed to be inescapable when you get older. But thanks to modern science we know substantially more concerning hearing loss prevention and even hearing regeneration.
The Reason why Loud Noise Causes Hearing loss
You must comprehend that noise is not harmless if you really want to begin to protect your hearing.
Sound is made up of waves of pressure. These waves go into your ear canal. They move all the way down past your eardrum and into your inner ear.
Here, tiny hair cells in your inner ear resonate. A neurological code is made up of how fast and how frequently these little tiny hairs vibrate. This code will be translated by your brain into the sound of birds singing, someone crying for assistance, a jet plane, or any other sound which might be around.
The issue is that when sounds become too loud these little hairs are damaged beyond repair. They die because the vibrations get to be too loud for them to handle.
Without them, you can not hear.
Why Noise-Related Hearing Loss is Irreversible
Various kinds of damage will be healed by your body. These little cells do not heal. When they are gone, they are lost forever. The more often you’re exposed to loud sounds, the more of these tiny cells you lose.
As they die, hearing loss advances.
There are Noises That are Common Which can Cause Hearing Loss
Many people are shocked to discover that everyday activities can be the cause of hearing loss. You might not think twice about:
- 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
- Being a musician
You don’t have to quit these activities. It is possible to minimize noise associated hearing loss by taking pro-active strategies.
You Don’t Need to Feel old Just Because you Have Hearing Loss
You can admit that you suffer from loss of hearing without having to feel older. Actually, failing to admit it can doom you to faster progression and difficulties that will definitely cause you to you feel a lot older in only a few short years including:
- Increased Fall Risk
- Social Isolation
- More frequent trips to the ER
- Strained relationships
These are all considerably more common in people with neglected hearing loss.
Continued Hearing Damage can be Prevented
Start by understanding how to avoid hearing damage.
- Put a sound meter app on your phone, and find out how loud things actually are.
- Damaging volumes should be avoided without proper hearing protection. Above 85 dB (decibels) will cause permanent hearing damage in 8 hours. 110 dB takes around 15 minutes to cause irreversible hearing loss. 120 dB and higher will cause immediate hearing loss. A gunshot is around 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. Over time it will get worse.
- Put on earplugs or maybe sound-dampening earmuffs when appropriate.
- Observe workplace hearing safety procedures.
- Reduce your exposure time to loud sounds.
- Steer clear of standing in close proximity to loudspeakers or turning speakers up at home.
- Invest in earbuds/headphones which come with integrated volume control. They don’t go over 90 decibels. Most people would have to listen pretty much non-stop all the time to do permanent damage.
- High blood pressure, low blood oxygen, and various medications can cause you to be more susceptible at lower volumes. To be certain, never listen to headphones at above 50%. Car speakers differ.
- Put on your hearing aid. Not using a hearing aid if you need them causes the brain to atrophy. It’s comparable to your leg muscles. If you stop walking, it will be much harder to walk.
Make a Hearing Exam
Are you in denial or procrastinating on it? Make the right decision sooner than later. The sooner you make the smart decision the less damage you will keep doing.
Speak to Your Hearing Professional Concerning Hearing Solutions
There are not any “normal cures” for hearing damage. If hearing loss is severe, it could be time to purchase a hearing aid.
A Cost-Benefits Assessment is the First Step
Many sufferers are either in denial about hearing loss, or alternatively, they decide to “tough it out.” They presume hearing aids will make them feel old. Or perhaps they believe they are too expensive.
But as soon as they recognize that hearing loss will deteriorate faster and can cause various health and relationship problems, it’s simple to see that the pros greatly outweigh the cons.
Consult a hearing care professional today about getting a hearing evaluation. And if hearing aids are needed, don’t worry about “feeling old.” Hearing aids nowadays are much sleeker and more sophisticated than you may think!