Did you know that an estimated 40 million Americans experience different types of hearing problems? Hearing health is usually ignored until a problem occurs. Untreated hearing loss can greatly affect one’s physical and emotional health which is why we highly advocate taking the extra effort to protect and improve hearing.
Audiologists can help you take care of your hearing by providing hearing tests, hearing aid fittings, professional earwax removal, etc. However, there are also simple hearing care measures you may do on your own that may help improve hearing.
Avoid loud noises
One of the most frequent causes of hearing loss is excessive noise, but the good news is that it’s also one of the most avoidable. When engaging in a noisy activity, use reliable hearing protection. When using headphones or earbuds, make sure that the volume is not too loud (not exceeding 60%) so as not to damage your hearing.
Keep your ears dry
Excessive moisture can result in ear infections and wax accumulation, both of which can impair hearing. After swimming or taking a shower, gently pat dry your ears with a soft cloth or towel to prevent water from getting inside the ear canal.
According to research, smoking increases your chance of developing hearing loss. That’s because carbon monoxide and nicotine both impair blood flow, which is necessary for keeping healthy cells in the inner ear. Smoking also interferes with your eustachian tube’s regular operation and strains the lining of your middle ear.
Tinnitus, sometimes known as ringing in the ears, has also been linked to nicotine usage. According to some specialists, it could affect the neurotransmitters that send signals from the hearing nerves to the brain.
Be on the lookout for earwax buildup
Cerumen, sometimes referred to as ear wax, is a natural defense system that guards the interior of your ear against infection, germs, and foreign objects. The glands in the outer ear produce ear wax, which can differ in consistency and color.
Wax accumulation in the ears can interfere with hearing and make sounds feel muted. Avoid attempting to remove earwax by yourself since doing so might harm the ear canal’s sensitive lining. Instead, see an audiologist about available treatments. In most cases, professional earwax removal can solve excess earwax issues.
Although ear wax is naturally healthy, too much of it can lead to pain and minor hearing loss. Again, never try to remove the wax by yourself as you run the risk of injuring the delicate lining of your ear canal, perforating your eardrum, as well as pushing the wax deeper into your ear.
Get regular hearing tests
Regular hearing exams can help you increase your chances of regaining normal hearing by identifying early indicators of hearing loss. A routine hearing test also gives your audiologist a baseline against which to assess your hearing as you age, making changes easier to spot. To know more about how you can improve your hearing, visit your local audiologist today!
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