Avoiding Noise-Related Hearing Loss

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

The typical summer day is likely filled with fun experiences and happenings, from motorcycle rides to family outings to fireworks to sporting events. The majority 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. A loud motorcycle engine or the roar of a crowd could be contributing to long-term, noise-induced hearing loss.

What is noise-related hearing loss? This condition happens when excessively loud noises, over time, trigger damage to your hearing. The result of this exposure is loss of hearing. Noise-induced hearing loss is effectively permanent.

Even though this type of hearing loss can’t be cured, it can be effectively managed. 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 basic adjustments.

Is summer actually that noisy?

Summer may be one of those times of year in which noise hazards are easiest to overlook. Some of the most common dangerously loud noises include the following:

  • Fireworks events: Summer has lots of fireworks. From neighborhood gatherings to holiday festivities to sporting events, fireworks shows are everywhere during the summer months. Unfortunately, fireworks are incredibly loud and can certainly cause damage to your hearing.
  • Sporting events: Crowd noise can damage your hearing, especially at events such as auto racing or monster truck rallies.
  • Routine use of power tools: Home improvement projects are great activities during the summer. But it’s important to keep in mind that all of those power tools can be quite noisy. Your hearing health is in increasing danger the more you utilize these tools.
  • Driving: Taking a Sunday drive is incredibly popular, but the wind rushing through your windows (or all around you if you happen to be driving a convertible) can be hard on your ears. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you are exposed.
  • Loud concerts: Even outside concerts present significant hazards to your hearing health. These events are, after all, intended to be really loud.
  • Routine lawn care: This category includes chainsaws, weed wackers, leaf blowers, and lawnmowers. The powerful motors in many of these mechanical tools are extremely loud. It’s worth noting that totally electric motors are usually quieter.

The volume level that’s regarded as where damage starts to happen is about 85 dB. A typical hair dryer, blender, or lawnmower is about this volume. These sounds might not seem especially loud so this is significant to note. But that doesn’t mean that such volumes won’t cause damage.

Preventing noise-related hearing damage

Each year, millions of people are affected by hearing loss. Noise-induced hearing loss can happen at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. Prevention is significant for this precise reason. Here are a few of the most practical prevention strategies:

  • 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 volume. At these volume levels, even your headphones or earbuds can quickly begin harming your hearing. There are numerous dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you monitor ambient noise levels, so you can be more mindful of when your surroundings become dangerous to your hearing.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): If you went to a loud fireworks display, make sure your next day is a quiet one. This can give your ears more time to recuperate and avoid further and more substantial damage.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Your ears can get a break by simply reducing the volume on your devices. Damage will advance more rapidly if you’re always listening to your devices at a high volume.
  • 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 example, go and spend some time in a quieter area.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Disposable earplugs aren’t as reliable as more customized types, but they’re much better than nothing! An inexpensive set of disposable earplugs can help prevent considerable damage if you find yourself in a loud setting all of a sudden.
  • Wear hearing protection: If you can’t avoid noisy environments (or don’t want to miss out on particular enjoyable activities), you can get a pair of quality ear muffs or ear plugs. When you’re in settings that are too loud, use this protection to your advantage. Damage can be avoided in this way. Custom hearing protection devices personalized to your ears and your hearing can be especially effective.
  • Get your hearing checked: Sometimes, hearing loss sneaks up on you quite gradually. Many individuals won’t notice 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 options for any hearing loss you might already have.

You don’t need to resign yourself to getting noise-related hearing loss. Prevention strategies can help preserve your hearing. You can protect your hearing and enjoy fun activities in any season with the correct approach.

Consulting with us can help start 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.