Preventing Noise-Related Hearing Loss

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

The average summer day is likely filled with fun experiences and happenings, from motorcycle rides to family reunions to fireworks to sporting events. Most of these activities are completely safe and healthy, but there are some that do come with a risk of noise-related hearing loss. That’s because loud noises, over time, can damage your ability to hear. This hearing damage could be caused by anything from a roaring motorcycle engine to the booms of a fireworks display.

What is noise-related hearing loss? This condition occurs when overly loud noises, over time, cause damage to your hearing. As a result, you experience hearing loss. Noise-induced hearing loss is effectively permanent.

Although this type of hearing loss can’t be cured, it can be successfully treated. Over the long run, you can protect your hearing and avoid damage by being aware of prevalent sources of loud noise and developing prevention strategies. You can protect the health of your hearing while still enjoying summer fun by using a few simple adjustments.

Is summer actually that noisy?

Summer might be one of those times of year where noise risks are easiest to miss. Here are a few of the most common and also most dangerous:

  • Loud concerts: Concerts put your hearing at risk even if they are outdoor concerts. These events are, after all, meant to be quite loud.
  • Driving: If you’re driving with the windows down, the wind noise can reach damaging volumes in your ears and this is even more relevant if you drive a convertible. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you are exposed.
  • Fireworks events: Summer is full of fireworks. From neighborhood parties to holiday festivities to sporting events, fireworks displays are everywhere during the summer months. Regrettably, fireworks are incredibly loud and can certainly cause damage to your hearing.
  • Sporting events: Crowd noise can damage your hearing, particularly at events like auto racing or monster truck rallies.
  • Routine use of power tools: Home improvement projects are great activities during the summer. But power tools, in general, are typically quite loud. The more you utilize these tools, the more your hearing risk increases.
  • Routine lawn care: This could include using lawnmowers, chainsaws, leaf blowers, and weed wackers. The powerful motors in many of these mechanical tools are very loud. It’s worth noting that purely electric motors are usually quieter.

The volume level that’s regarded as where damage starts to happen is about 85 dB. This is about the volume of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. These sounds may not seem especially loud so this is important to note. But the volume of these devices can result in hearing damage over time.

Preventing noise-related hearing damage

Noise-related hearing loss impacts millions of individuals each year. Noise-induced hearing loss can occur at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. Prevention is significant for this precise reason. Some of the most successful prevention strategies include the following:

  • Get your hearing checked: In some cases, hearing loss creeps up on you quite slowly. Many people won’t detect the symptoms for months or years. Having your hearing checked can help you identify whether you have noise-related hearing loss. We will help you comprehend how to keep your hearing healthy for years to come and discuss treatment solutions for any hearing loss you may already have.
  • Wear hearing protection: If you cannot avoid noisy situations (or don’t want to miss out on particular fun activities), you can get a set of good ear muffs or ear plugs. When you are in environments that are too noisy, use this protection to your advantage. Damage can be avoided in this way. You can be especially benefited by making use of hearing protection costume designed for you.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Utilizing disposable earplugs might not be as effective as customized earplugs but, in a pinch, they’re better than no protection at all. An inexpensive pair of disposable earplugs can help prevent considerable damage if you find yourself in a noisy environment all of a sudden.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Your ears can get a break by simply decreasing the volume on your devices. When everything is loud all the time, damage can develop much faster.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: You might be surprised at just how quickly sounds can increase above that 85dB danger zone level. At these volume levels, even your headphones or earbuds can quickly begin harming your hearing. There are many dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you monitor ambient noise levels, so you can be more aware of when your surroundings become dangerous to your hearing.
  • Limit your time in noisy environments: If your environment is really noisy, you need to limit your exposure time. Your ears can be safeguarded from long-term damage in this way. Every thirty minutes or so, when you’re at a noisy sporting event, for instance, go and spend some time in a quieter area.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): If you attended a loud fireworks display, make sure your next day is a quiet one. This can give your ears more time to recuperate and prevent further and more substantial damage.

You don’t need to resign yourself to having noise-induced hearing loss. Prevention strategies can help preserve your hearing. You can safeguard your hearing and enjoy fun activities in any season with the right strategy.

Talking to us can help begin your journey towards healthier ears and better hearing. Call today for an appointment!

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.