Strategies to Avoid Noise-Induced 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 enjoyable activities. And while the majority of these activities are safe, many can present invisible risks to your hearing health. 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.

Over time, extremely loud noises can cause damage to your ears. The consequence of this exposure is loss of hearing. Noise-induced hearing loss is effectively irreversible.

Although this kind of hearing loss has no cure, it can be effectively treated. Raising your awareness of these common loud noises can help you better control risks and establish prevention strategies, so you can protect your hearing over the long run. With a few basic adjustments, you can enjoy your summer fun and safeguard your hearing health.

Is summer actually that noisy?

It can be very easy to overlook noise risks during the summer months. Here are a few of the most prevalent and also most hazardous:

  • Sporting events: Any time you’re around loud crowds, you may increase your risk of noise damage (this can be even more relevant at sporting events that feature motorized attractions, including a Nascar race or monster truck rally).
  • Fireworks events: Summer has lots of fireworks. From neighborhood gatherings to holiday celebrations to sporting events, fireworks shows are everywhere during the summer months. Regrettably, fireworks are incredibly loud and can certainly cause damage to your ears.
  • Loud concerts: Concerts put your hearing at risk even if they’re outside concerts. After all, these events are planned to be as loud as possible.
  • Routine lawn care: This could include using lawnmowers, chainsaws, leaf blowers, and weed wackers. The powerful motors in most of these mechanical tools are very loud. It’s worth noting 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 relevant if you drive a convertible. This is particularly true if the sound happens for long durations without breaks.
  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is an excellent time for home improvement projects. But it’s crucial to keep in mind that all of those power tools can be rather noisy. The more you use these tools, the more your hearing hazard increases.

The volume level that’s considered to be where damage starts to happen is around 85 dB. A typical hair dryer, blender, or lawnmower is about this volume. That’s significant to take note of because these sounds may not seem particularly noisy. But the volume of these devices can result in hearing damage over time.

Preventing noise-induced hearing damage

Noise-related hearing loss impacts millions of individuals each year. Noise-induced hearing loss can occur at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. That’s why prevention is so important. Here are some of the most practical prevention strategies:

  • Turn down the volume at home: Simply lowering 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 develop more quickly.
  • Wear hearing protection: If you cannot avoid loud situations (or don’t want to miss out on particular enjoyable activities), you can invest in a pair of good ear muffs or ear plugs. When you are in locations that are too noisy, use this protection to your advantage. This can help prevent damage. Custom hearing protection devices personalized to your ears and your hearing can be particularly effective.
  • 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. If you’re at a noisy sporting event, for example, walk to a quieter area every thirty minutes or so.
  • 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 recover and avoid further and more substantial damage.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Disposable earplugs aren’t as reliable as more customized types, but they’re far better than nothing! If you find yourself abruptly in a noisy environment, a cheap set of disposable earplugs can help prevent substantial hearing damage.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: You may be surprised at just how fast sounds can escalate above that 85dB danger zone volume. At these volume levels, even your headphones or earbuds can rapidly begin harming your ears. You can become more aware of when volume levels begin to get too loud by downloading a volume monitoring app for your cellphone.
  • Get your hearing checked: Hearing loss normally doesn’t happen suddenly. Many individuals won’t detect the symptoms for months or years. Often, the only way to find out whether you have any noise-related hearing loss is to get your hearing examined. We will help you comprehend how to keep your hearing healthy for years to come and talk about treatment solutions for any hearing loss you might already have.

You don’t need to resign yourself to having noise-related hearing loss. You’re hearing can be maintained by using prevention strategies. You can protect your hearing and enjoy fun activities in any season with the correct strategy.

Talking to us can help begin 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.