Now Hear This! 10 Tips To Keep Your Hearing Healthy

As with most diseases, it’s important to detect them early in order to prevent greater damage. Hearing loss, affecting more than 36 million Americans, is no different. If it’s discovered early enough, it may be preventable. Hearing loss is the third most prevalent health issue in the U.S. Hearing loss is a serious matter, and can negatively affect your personal and social relationships if left untreated. If you are in NJ elder care and suspect your loved one may be experiencing hearing loss, have them see a doctor or an audiologist. There are many treatments and devices available which can increase their quality of life.

Ten ways to keep your hearing healthy:

  • Lessen your exposure to loud sounds or music — wear hearing protectors when you’re in a loud environment (earplugs, earmuffs) and keep the music at a lower volume, especially if wearing headphones or ear buds
  • Be careful when using cotton swabs in your ears — swabs may damage your ear canal and can push the earwax in far enough—causing your eardrum to puncture
  • Stop smoking — hearing can become damaged the more a person smokes, both in quantity and duration
  • Avoid diabetes — keep healthy by maintaining a proper weight, exercising daily, and eating a healthy diet. This will help you avoid type 2 diabetes which can encourage hearing loss
  • Don’t drink alcohol in excess — heavy drinking may lead to permanent hearing loss, while even mild drinking may cause a temporary decrease in hearing levels
  • Stay away from organic solvents — these are usually found in paints, printer’s inks, and lacquers, and can cause hearing damage
  • Limit medications which could cause hearing loss– some antibiotics, chemotherapy drugs, aspirin, and NSAIDS, for example
  • Eat foods rich in antioxidants — such as red beans, blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, artichokes, apples; vitamin supplements may also help prevent hearing loss
  • Keep your heart healthy through diet and exercise — there is a strong relationship between a healthy cardiovascular system and healthy hearing
  • Consult an audiologist to have a hearing screening. Go to www.audiologyawareness.com to find a local audiologist.

When to seek treatment:

  • If you have difficulty hearing people talk in noisy locations, such as a shopping mall or restaurant
  • If you have difficulty understanding people’s conversations with you (are they “mumbling”?)
  • If you have people repeat several times what they have just said to you
  • If you cannot hear people speaking unless they are directly in front of you
  • If you hear buzzing, ringing or hissing sounds
  • If you are turning up the TV volume louder than other people are comfortable with