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Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

The average summer day is usually filled with fun experiences and happenings, from motorcycle rides to family outings to fireworks to sporting events. The majority of these activities are perfectly safe and healthy, but there are some that do come with a risk of noise-related hearing loss. That’s because loud noises, over time, can harm your ability to hear. A loud motorcycle engine or a roaring crowd could be causing long-term, noise-induced hearing loss.

What is noise-induced hearing loss? This condition occurs when overly loud noises, over time, trigger damage to your hearing. The result of this exposure is loss of hearing. This kind of hearing loss is irreversible.

Even though this kind of hearing loss has no cure, it can be successfully treated. Over the long run, you can protect your hearing and avoid damage by being aware of common sources of loud noise and formulating prevention strategies. You can protect the health of your hearing while still enjoying summer fun by utilizing a few simple adjustments.

Is it really that loud during the summer?

Summer may be one of those times of year in which noise hazards are easiest to overlook. Some of the most common dangerously loud noises include the following:

  • Routine lawn care: This might include using lawnmowers, chainsaws, leaf blowers, and weed wackers. The powerful motors in many of these mechanical tools are extremely loud. It’s worth pointing out that totally electric motors are often quieter.
  • Loud concerts: Concerts put your hearing at risk even if they are outside concerts. These events are, after all, meant to be really loud.
  • Fireworks events: Summer has lots of fireworks. They take place at holiday celebrations, sporting events, and impromptu neighborhood gatherings. But fireworks shows are easily loud enough to trigger irreversible hearing damage.
  • Driving: If you’re driving with the windows down, the wind noise can reach harmful volumes in your ears and this is even more significant if you drive a convertible. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you’re exposed.
  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is a great time for home improvement projects. But power tools, in general, are often really loud. The more you use these tools, the more your hearing risk increases.
  • Sporting events: Any time you’re around loud crowds, you could increase your risk of noise damage (this can be even more prevalent at sporting events that feature motorized attractions, including a Nascar race or monster truck rally).

In general, sounds above 85dB are considered to be harmful. This is around the range of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. These sounds may not seem especially loud so this is significant to note. But that doesn’t mean that such volumes won’t cause damage.

How can I prevent noise-induced hearing loss?

Each year, millions of people are impacted by hearing loss. And, unlike age-related hearing loss, noise-related hearing loss can present at any age. Prevention is significant for this exact reason. Here are a few of the most helpful prevention strategies:

  • Limit your time in noisy environments: The more noisy the environment, the more you should limit your time. Your ears can be safeguarded from long-term damage in this way. 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.
  • Wear hearing protection: If you cannot avoid noisy environments (or don’t want to miss out on particular enjoyable activities), you can invest in a set of good ear muffs or ear plugs. Use this hearing protection whenever you need to, when you are in environments that are loud. This can help you avoid damage. Custom hearing protection devices tailored to your ears and your hearing can be particularly effective.
  • 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 start damaging your ears. There are numerous dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you track ambient noise levels, so you can be more aware of when your surroundings become dangerous to your hearing.
  • 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 recuperate and avoid further and more substantial damage.
  • Get your hearing checked: Hearing loss typically doesn’t develop suddenly. It could take years to notice in many cases. Having your hearing checked can help you identify whether you have noise-related hearing loss. We’ll be able to discuss how to prevent further damage, which treatment solutions may be appropriate, and how to keep your hearing as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Disposable earplugs aren’t as effective as more customized types, but they’re much better than nothing! An inexpensive pair of disposable earplugs can help prevent considerable damage if you find yourself in a loud setting all of a sudden.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Simply reducing the volume on your TV and music playing devices can help give your ears some rest and a chance to recuperate. Damage will develop faster if you’re always listening to your devices at a loud volume.

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

Talking to us can help start your journey towards healthier ears and better hearing. Call today for an appointment!

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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.
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