Practices to Avoid Noise-Related Hearing Loss

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

From sporting events to family get-togethers to fireworks shows to motorcycle rides, summer is filled with fun activities. And while most of these activities are healthy, many can present hidden risks to your hearing health. Over time, the loud noises that come with some of these experiences can cause permanent 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.

Over time, really loud noises can trigger damage to your ears. The result of this exposure is loss of hearing. Noise-related hearing loss is effectively irreversible.

There is no cure, but this form of hearing loss can be effectively managed. Over the long run, you can safeguard your hearing and prevent damage by being aware of prevalent sources of loud noise and developing prevention strategies. With a few basic adjustments, you can enjoy your summer fun and safeguard your hearing health.

Is it actually that loud during the summer?

It can be quite easy to miss noise risks during the summer months. Here are a few of the most common and also most hazardous:

  • Fireworks events: Summer is full of fireworks. From neighborhood parties to holiday celebrations to sporting events, fireworks displays are everywhere during the summer months. But fireworks shows are definitely loud enough to trigger permanent hearing damage.
  • Sporting events: Any time you’re around noisy crowds, you may increase your risk of noise damage (this can be even more prevalent at sporting events that feature motorized attractions, such as a Nascar race or monster truck rally).
  • Loud concerts: Even outdoor concerts have considerable hazards to your hearing health. After all, these events are planned to be as loud as possible.
  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is an excellent time for home improvement projects. But it’s significant to keep in mind that all of those power tools can be really noisy. Your hearing health is in increasing danger the more you use these tools.
  • Routine lawn care: This category includes chainsaws, weed wackers, leaf blowers, and lawnmowers. The powerful motors in most of these mechanical tools are incredibly loud. Motors that run on electricity rather than gas are typically quite a bit quieter, though.
  • Driving: Going for a Sunday drive is very 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. This is especially true if the sound occurs for long durations without breaks.

In general, sounds above 85dB are considered to be harmful. This is about the range of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. These sounds might not seem particularly loud so this is important to note. But that doesn’t mean that such volumes won’t result in damage.

Preventing noise-induced hearing damage

Every year, millions of people are impacted by hearing loss. Noise-related hearing loss can occur at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. Prevention is important for this precise reason. Here are a few of the most helpful prevention strategies:

  • Limit your time in noisy environments: If your environment is really loud, you should regulate your exposure time. Your ears can be protected from long-term damage in this way. If you’re at a noisy sporting event, for instance, walk to a quieter spot every thirty minutes or so.
  • Get your hearing checked: Sometimes, hearing loss sneaks up on you really gradually. It could take years to notice in many instances. Often, the only way to determine whether you have any noise-related hearing loss is to get your hearing examined. We’ll be able to discuss how to prevent further damage, which treatment solutions might be appropriate, and how to keep your hearing as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
  • Wear hearing protection: Keep a pair of ear plugs or ear muffs handy in case you can’t or are not willing to avoid specific loud situations. When you are in settings that are too noisy, use this protection to your advantage. Damage can be avoided in this way. You can be especially benefited by using hearing protection costume designed for you.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: 85 dB might not seem like a lot, but you would probably be surprised how fast sounds can increase above that minimum threshold. Even your earbuds and headphones can start to do damage at these volume levels. You can become more conscious of when volume levels start to get too loud by downloading a volume monitoring app for your cellphone.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Disposable earplugs aren’t as reliable as more customized types, but they’re much better than nothing! If you find yourself suddenly in a noisy environment, a cheap set of disposable earplugs can help prevent substantial hearing damage.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Simply reducing the volume on your TV and music playing devices can help give your ears some rest and a chance to recover. When everything is loud all the time, damage can progress more quickly.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): If you went to a loud fireworks show, 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.

You don’t need to resign yourself to having noise-related hearing loss. You’re hearing can be preserved by utilizing prevention strategies. With the proper 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.