Strategies to Prevent Noise-Related Hearing Loss

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

The typical summer day is likely filled with fun experiences and happenings, from motorcycle rides to family reunions to fireworks to sporting events. And while the majority of these activities are safe, many can present hidden risks to your hearing health. Over time, the loud noises that come with some of these experiences can result in permanent hearing damage. A loud motorcycle engine or the roar of a crowd could be contributing to long-term, noise-induced hearing loss.

Over time, very loud noises can trigger damage to your ears. As a consequence, you experience hearing loss. This type of hearing loss has no cure.

There is no cure, but this form of hearing loss can be successfully managed. Increasing your awareness of these common loud noises can help you better control risks and develop prevention strategies, so you can safeguard your hearing over the long run. You can safeguard the health of your hearing while still enjoying summer fun by utilizing a few basic adjustments.

Is it really that loud during the summer?

It can be really easy to overlook noise risks during the summer months. Some of the most common dangerously loud noises include the following:

  • Routine lawn care: This may include using lawnmowers, chainsaws, leaf blowers, and weed wackers. The powerful motors in most of these mechanical tools are very loud. Motors that run on electricity rather than gas are normally quite a bit quieter, though.
  • Sporting events: Any time you’re around noisy crowds, you could increase your risk of noise damage (this can be even more relevant at sporting events that feature motorized attractions, such as a Nascar race or monster truck rally).
  • Driving: Going for a Sunday drive is incredibly popular, but the wind rushing into your windows (or all around you if you’re driving a convertible) can be tough on your ears. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you are exposed.
  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is a perfect time for home improvement projects. But power tools, in general, are typically quite loud. Your hearing health is in increasing danger the more you use these tools.
  • Loud concerts: Even outdoor concerts have substantial hazards to your hearing health. After all, these events are planned to be as loud as possible.
  • Fireworks events: Many towns have fireworks displays every month or more during the summer. From neighborhood gatherings to holiday celebrations to sporting events, fireworks shows are everywhere during the summer months. Unfortunately, fireworks are incredibly loud and can definitely cause damage to your hearing.

The volume level that’s regarded as where damage starts to happen is about 85 dB. This is about the volume of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. These sounds might not seem particularly loud so this is significant to note. But that doesn’t mean that such volumes won’t result in damage.

How can I prevent noise-related hearing loss?

Noise-related hearing loss impacts millions of people each year. Noise-related hearing loss can occur at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. That’s why prevention is so significant. Some of the most successful prevention strategies include the following:

  • Turn down the volume at home: Simply reducing the volume on your TV and music playing devices can help give your ears some quiet and a chance to recover. When everything is loud all the time, damage can develop much faster.
  • Get your hearing checked: Hearing loss normally doesn’t happen all of a sudden. It could take years to detect in many instances. Having your hearing checked can help you identify whether you have noise-related hearing loss. We’ll be able to go over how to prevent additional damage, which treatment solutions might be appropriate, and how to keep your hearing as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: 85 dB might not seem like a lot, but you would most likely be surprised how fast sounds can increase above that minimum threshold. At these volume levels, even your headphones or earbuds can rapidly begin harming your ears. There are many dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you monitor ambient noise levels, so you can be more aware of when your surroundings become harmful to your hearing.
  • Wear hearing protection: Keep a pair of ear plugs or ear muffs handy in case you can’t or are not willing to avoid certain noisy situations. Use this hearing protection when you need to, when you are in environments that are noisy. This can help prevent damage. You can be particularly benefited by using hearing protection costume designed for you.
  • Limit your time in noisy environments: If your environment is really loud, you should regulate your exposure time. This can help protect against long-term damage to your hearing. Every thirty minutes or so, when you’re at a noisy sporting event, for instance, go and spend some time in a less noisy spot.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): Spend a quieter next day after going to a fireworks display. Additional and more substantial damage can be prevented by giving your ears a chance to rest and recover.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Using disposable earplugs may not be as reliable as customized earplugs but, in a pinch, they’re better than no protection at all. An inexpensive pair of disposable earplugs can help prevent considerable damage if you find yourself in a loud setting all of a sudden.

You don’t need to resign yourself to getting noise-related hearing loss. You’re hearing can be preserved by using prevention strategies. With the proper strategy, you can enjoy all that summer, or any other season, has to offer and protect your hearing.

Begin your journey towards better hearing by giving us a call for an appointment.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Schedule an appointment to see if hearing aids could benefit you.