Avoiding Noise-Related Hearing Loss

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

From sporting events to family gatherings to fireworks displays to motorcycle rides, summer is filled with enjoyable experiences. Most of these activities are perfectly safe and healthy, but there are some that do come with a risk of noise-related hearing loss. Over time, the loud noises that accompany some of these activities can result in irreversible hearing damage. This hearing damage could be the result of anything from the roar of a motorcycle engine to the booms of a fireworks display.

What is noise-related hearing loss? This condition happens when extremely loud noises, over time, trigger damage to your hearing. The consequence of this exposure is loss of hearing. This type of hearing loss has no cure.

There is no cure, though this type of hearing loss can be successfully managed. Raising your awareness of these prevalent loud noises can help you better control risks and develop prevention strategies, so you can safeguard your hearing over the long run. You can safeguard the health of your hearing while still enjoying summer fun by making use of a few simple adjustments.

Is it really that loud during the summer?

It can be really easy to miss noise risks during the summer months. Some of the most common dangerously loud noises include the following:

  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is an ideal time for home improvement projects. But it’s significant to remember that all of those power tools can be really noisy. Your hearing health is in increasing danger the more you utilize these tools.
  • Sporting events: Crowd noise can harm your hearing, particularly at events such as auto racing or monster truck rallies.
  • Fireworks events: Summer has lots of fireworks. They happen at holiday celebrations, sporting events, and impromptu neighborhood gatherings. But fireworks shows are easily loud enough to cause irreversible hearing damage.
  • Routine lawn care: Included in this category are chainsaws, weed wackers, leaf blowers, and lawnmowers. The powerful motors in most of these mechanical tools are extremely loud. It’s worth pointing out that entirely electric motors are often quieter.
  • Driving: If you’re driving with the windows down, the wind noise can reach damaging volumes in your ears and this is even more significant if you drive a convertible. And the risk becomes exponentially worse the longer you are exposed.
  • Loud concerts: Even outside concerts present considerable risks to your hearing health. These events are, after all, meant to be really loud.

In general, sounds louder than 85dB are considered to be harmful. This is around the range of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. That’s important to take note of because these sounds may not feel particularly noisy. But that doesn’t mean that such volumes won’t cause damage.

How can I prevent noise-related hearing loss?

Every year, millions of individuals are impacted by hearing loss. And, unlike age-related hearing loss, noise-induced hearing loss can happen at any age. That’s why prevention is so important. Here are some of the most practical prevention strategies:

  • Limit your time in noisy environments: The louder the environment, the more you should regulate your time. This can help protect against long-term damage to your hearing. Every thirty minutes or so, when you’re at a loud sporting event, for example, go and spend some time in a less noisy spot.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Simply lowering the volume on your TV and music playing devices can help give your ears some quiet and a chance to recover. When everything is loud all the time, damage can progress more quickly.
  • Get your hearing checked: Sometimes, hearing loss sneaks up on you very slowly. Many individuals won’t detect the symptoms for months or years. Often, the only way to determine whether you have any noise-related hearing loss is to have your hearing examined. We’ll be able to discuss how to avoid additional damage, which treatment options might be appropriate, and how to keep your hearing as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): Spend a quieter next day after attending a fireworks display. This can give your ears more time to recuperate and avoid further and more substantial damage.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Disposable earplugs aren’t as effective as more customized types, but they’re a lot better than nothing! An inexpensive pair of disposable earplugs can help prevent significant damage if you find yourself in a loud setting all of a sudden.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: You may be surprised at just how quickly sounds can escalate above that 85dB danger zone level. Even your earbuds and headphones can begin to do damage at these volume levels. There are many dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you track ambient noise levels, so you can be more aware of when your surroundings become dangerous to your hearing.
  • Wear hearing protection: Keep a set of ear plugs or ear muffs handy in case you can’t or are not willing to avoid specific noisy situations. Wear this hearing protection when you need to, when you are in situations that are noisy. This can help you avoid damage. You can be particularly benefited by utilizing hearing protection costume made for you.

You don’t need to resign yourself to getting noise-related hearing loss. You’re hearing can be maintained by using prevention strategies. With the correct strategy, you can enjoy all that summer, or any other season, has to offer and protect your hearing.

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.

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