You may have made a long list of resolutions in January, but it’s never too late to add more! In 2020, resolve to take your hearing health seriously.
Untreated hearing loss can have serious consequences, including social withdrawal, depression, falls/imbalance and even cognitive decline. Here are four resolutions you can make this year to preserve your hearing and prevent or delay these negative health conditions.
1. Wear Hearing Protection
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), any sound greater than 85 dB – about the volume of highway traffic – can cause permanent hearing damage. Noise levels of snow blowers, lawn mowers, and weed whackers can all exceed this noise level, and hobbies such as shooting and attending live concerts can blow it out of the water.
Custom earplugs are available for any noisy activity and provide maximum comfort and protection, but even drugstore earplugs can be helpful in preserving your sense of hearing.
2. Get a Hearing Test
While most people associate hearing loss with old age, about 15 percent of the U.S. population between ages 20 and 69 experience noise-induced hearing loss, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD).
Audiologists recommend a baseline hearing exam around age 21, with follow-up screenings every three to five years. Once you reach 50 years of age, you should get your hearing tested every year, especially if you have a family history of hearing loss or have been exposed to loud noises in your occupation.
3. Buy Safe Headphones
Standard Apple earbuds have a volume level that maxes out above 100 dB – way over the threshold that is considered safe. While keeping the volume low on earbuds and headphones is always a good idea, investing in noise-canceling headphones will help block out ambient noises and allow you to hear your music or podcast easily without cranking up the volume.
4. Exercise Regularly
There is a strong correlation between heart disease and hearing loss. By keeping your cardiovascular system in shape, you can maintain healthy blood circulation to the inner ear – an important factor in your hearing health.
For help achieving your 2020 hearing resolutions, contact ENT of Georgia today!