Smart Decisions: Protecting your Hearing During Work and Play

Most people will lose some amount of hearing during the course of their lives due to aging. But a lot of people don’t think about hearing loss until it’s too late. Some people believe that hearing loss isn’t something to worry about until later in life, but it can happen at any age. Prevention is the best treatment, so here are some ways to keep your hearing protected.

Loud Music

Turn down your music. This is the number one piece of advice when doctors are asked how to protect a person from hearing loss. If you listen to headphones, make sure you aren’t listening to them for extended periods of time. If the person next to you can hear sound coming from your headphones, your music is too loud. Also, if you can’t hear any of the sounds around you, you need to turn the music down, as your hearing is being damaged.

Sporting Events

Many sporting events are very loud, such as car racing and football. Always bring ear covers or protection with you. Even if the sounds are only loud to you, such as those who suffer from sensitivity to noise, still bring protection so as to keep your hearing from being damaged. Don’t use cotton swabs to plug your ears, as they can often get lodged in the eardrum, causing damage, and they are not enough to keep out loud frequencies. Using earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones are your best options.

Industrial Hazards

Those who work on construction sites are often exposed to loud drills and banging sounds all day long. Similarly, those who are active in the military or in police work are exposed to loud firearms, sirens, and so on. Even factory jobs can be extremely noisy, as there are large machines running at all times. If you work in an environment like this, be sure to wear protective ear covers when you are working to minimize damage to your hearing. If your employer does not provide them, ask if they can be provided, or purchase some on your own.

Entertainment

Many entertainment venues are loud, and the effects of loud music on a person’s hearing have been discussed as far back as the 1970’s in medical studies. Concerts and movie theaters are especially noisy, as well, with volumes at exceptionally high levels. Don’t be embarrassed to bring ear protectors if a venue is too loud for you. Many earplugs are invisible, and you can often find some that don’t completely block out noise, but that simply minimize it. Night clubs and other entertainment venues can also be quite loud, so be sure to protect your ears.

When to See a Doctor

If you have tinnitus, or ringing in the ears, constantly and it doesn’t go away, you should seek out the advice of a doctor. Similarly, if you have to start asking questions about the conversations you take part in, or you have to keep asking people to repeat themselves, it might be time for an appointment. A feeling of fullness in the ear or hearing voices as though they were muffled can also indicate hearing damage. A doctor can help you determine if there is damage and, if so, what the best course of treatment is for you. Can easily connect with reputable doctor using many services like HealthyHearing.com.

Always protect your ears from loud noises when you are exposed to them. Be on the lookout for early warning signs of hearing loss. Keep in mind that early detection and treatment is the key, so if you start to see signs of hearing loss or damage, call a doctor right away. When you can, avoid loud noises and situations where your hearing may be put at risk. A little bit of protection today can save you a world of trouble in the future.

About the author

Kenneth Bassett is passionate about ear health. He often writes about basic care and safety on ear and hearing blogs.