Woman with Hearing Loss

There’s no denying that hearing loss can have a profound effect on your day-to-day life. It can make navigating even the most quotidian of situations, like going for a drink with friends in a busy bar stressful. It can impede communications between you and your loved ones and even become a source of tension in your relationships. There’s evidence to suggest that living with untreated hearing loss can lead to feelings of isolation and depression.

Fortunately, the science of audiology has responded in kind, harnessing digital technologies to bring convenient solutions to those afflicted by a loss of hearing. But while most of us are aware of the range of solutions available to us to combat hearing loss, can it be prevented altogether?

While there are many contributing factors to hearing loss, some of which may be genetic (such as Meniere’s disease), there are still a number of ways in which we can protect our ears in order to prevent or mitigate hearing loss.

Take precautions at work

If you work with loud or noisy machinery it is incumbent upon your employer to provide you with some form of protection for your ears in order to mitigate the risk of hearing loss. If you feel as though your daily duties have a detrimental effect upon your hearing, your employer has a responsibility to help you by:

  • Providing you with quieter equipment
  • Providing you with protective wear
  • Moving you to a quieter area

Take care when listening to music

In an age where many of us traverse the busy streets or crowded trains on our way to work with headphones in our ears, we all run the risk of damaging our hearing. But you can still enjoy your music while safeguarding your hearing. Use noise-canceling headphones so that you’re less tempted to turn up the hearing to block out noise from outside.

Loud music from headphones ranges from 100-110 decibels. That’s only 10 decibels short of a plane taking off. Thus, you should avoid raising the volume to more than 60 percent to protect your ears. It is not recommended that you use headphones for longer than one hour at a time without a break of at least five minutes.

Protect your ears when attending loud events and activities

If your lifestyle involves attending a lot of concerts, parties, bars and clubs, it’s likely that you regularly expose your ears to loud music on a fairly regular basis. Over time this can damage your hearing. Fortunately, you can take steps to mitigate this without changing your lifestyle.

Keep a safe distance from speakers and other loud noise sources. Take a break from the noise every 15-30 minutes or consider wearing earplugs. There are plenty of single-use earplugs on the market, which reduce the volume of the music you listen to without distorting it.

Get your hearing tested regularly

As with any health issue, the earlier hearing loss is identified, the more options you have for treatment. Getting your hearing tested regularly will allow you to identify the causes of your hearing loss and put measures in place to prevent it from further impacting on your day to day life.