Hearing loss crosses all age groups. We’ve gone over hearing loss among older adults, and the risks associated with hearing loss as you age.
It’s important to raise awareness that more and more young adults are experiencing hearing loss for a number of different reasons. Young adults who have hearing loss face a unique set of challenges as they go through college, dating, employment, growing relationships, and parenting.
How prevalent is Hearing Loss in Young Adults?
According to the CDC, around 12% of adults between the ages of 18-39 report struggling with following along during conversations when there is too much background noise. Nearly 6% have tinnitus. These numbers are higher in older age groups.
People who have hearing loss are more likely to experience low rates of employment, lower work productivity, and higher healthcare costs compared to their peers.
Causes of Hearing Loss for Young Adults
Noise exposure is one of the most widespread causes of hearing loss for young adults, as well as older adults. This can lead to noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Across the U.S. millions of Gen Xers, millennials, and Gen Y have been exposed to hazardous levels of noise, including hobbies like woodworking, music, city noises, and workplace environments.
Additional risk factors include diabetes, high blood pressure, taking ototoxic medications, viruses, bacterial infections, genetics, or they were born with it.
Young Adults with Otosclerosis
Otosclerosis is one of the other most common medical causes of hearing loss in people of this age group and middle-aged adults. This is when there is abnormal bone growth in the middle ear section. Nearly 3 million Americans are affected by it - the people with the highest risk being middle-aged women.
The Affect of Hearing Loss on Young Adults
The different causes of hearing loss for young adults differ greatly from the older generation but wearing hearing aids when you are in your 20s, 30s, or 40s can look and feel different than wearing them when you are older. Occupation, family, relationships, and activities are - for the most part - different than older people.
Working with hearing loss, while NOT impossible, can be tricky at times. People in their 20s are fresh out of college and looking for their first job. They have the choice of when they should inform their potential employer that they wear hearing aids. Depending on where your job path takes you, you may need special equipment - like a telephone with amplification or captions. Your employer is required by law, via the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), to accommodate you for your hearing needs. You can apply for any job that you want, but there are some careers that may be easier to navigate through if you have hearing loss. Take a look at our article “Careers for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing”.
Working Remotely with Hearing Loss
If you have hearing loss, depending on the job, working from home can have its ups and downs. You can raise the volume on your computer as much as you want, without bothering coworkers. The technology for virtual meetings doesn’t always work smoothly, so it can hamper communication. Read up on some tips on how to prepare for video conferences or virtual meetings.
Parents or Guardians Raising Children and Young Adults
Taking care of a child as a hearing aid user has its challenges. Hearing aids are needed for better communication and safety, but using them requires consideration from those who are communicating with the hearing aid users. A parent may need a baby monitor that flashes, vibrates, and has a video monitor. Making sure your hearing aids are always in good condition is also important, especially if there’s a sudden emergency.
Attending College or Higher Education
Another concern that differs among generations is that young adults are deciding whether to attend college or higher education. People in this age group might not receive the support that is needed to thrive in school. Young adults may be learning how to be their own advocates for the first time.
Hearing Aids can help You Maintain or even Raise Your Income and Improve Overall Health
The ability to hear in a work environment can impact your household income, which is a common concern for people who are in their prime age of employment. According to a survey that was done through Better Hearing Institute 40,000 households in the U.S. indicated that using hearing aids and assistive listening devices was beneficial to one’s earning potential. There was also a 90 to 100 percent reduced risk of income loss for anyone with mild hearing loss, and a 65 to 77 percent reduced risk for anyone with moderate to severe hearing loss.
Hearing aid usage has a more obvious asset to mental health for younger people. A study from 2014 indicated that hearing loss is linked to depression in adults of every age, but it's more common in young adults. Even though hearing aids help people of all ages, younger users appear to gain the most out of them when it comes to depression. Socializing leads to a healthy overall quality of life.
Hearing Aid usage is becoming Less Stigmatized
In regards to hearing aid usage, there are major distinctions between the older generation and the younger generation. Most people of the younger generation are more accepting of wearing hearing aids. Today, just about everyone wears something in their ears, whether they are earbuds, headphones, or hearing aids; therefore hearing devices draw less attention. The stigma of hearing aid usage is dwindling and the younger generation is noticing that their untreated hearing loss is more noticeable than the hearing aids themselves.
If you are a young adult or middle-aged with hearing loss, you have the chance to seek treatment and engage in practices that protect and slow down the hearing abilities that you still have.
For a complimentary hearing test and consultation, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to set up an appointment.
A Study on Women's Exercise Routines and Hearing Health
Analysts from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA reviewed 20 years of female nurses’ health records. They examined whether body mass index (BMI), the circumference of their waist, and physical activity had any relation to hearing loss.
The authors of this study were aware of the adverse repercussions of hearing loss that went untreated, observing how communication and social skills can impact a person’s psychosocial well-being and overall quality of life. They strived to determine lifestyle factors that could be changed by the test subjects so that they may lower their chances of hearing loss.
Conclusions on the Study
The study found that female nurses with higher BMI and larger waist circumferences were linked to a higher risk of hearing loss. There was a reduced risk of hearing loss if the test subjects engaged in regular exercise - these included walking, aerobics, swimming, and other less intense exercises.
They also found walks that lasted at least 2 hours each week, lower the risk of hearing loss.
If you’re working up the motivation to increase your exercise routine, add hearing health to that list.
Are you, or a loved one, experiencing hearing loss? Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you have osteoporosis, there’s a chance that you may also experience hearing loss. These comorbidities are often related to one another.
A study from 2021, concluded that the risk of hearing loss for women who had a low bone density, or osteoporosis, was 40 percent higher than for those without low bone density.
Bisphosphonate, an osteoporosis drug, did not appear to reduce any risks of hearing loss. More research is needed for a conclusive answer.
Osteoporosis happens as a result of bone breaking down at a faster rate than it can be replaced by the body. This leads to higher risks of bone fractures. It can happen to anyone, but it is most common in Asian and white women.
One of the most prevalent chronic conditions that impact older adults is, hearing loss. The main risk factor, and only preventable type of hearing loss, is exposure to noise. When this gets paired with aging, it exponentially raises the risks. Additional health problems, like anemia, diabetes, and heart disease can create even more risks. But these aren’t the only causes of hearing loss.
What is the Connection between Osteoporosis and Hearing Loss?
The actual relationship is still being determined for certain, but they are suggesting that tiny bones in the ears lose their minerals and weaken. These bones are vital for your hearing system. Osteoporosis may also negatively impact the bones that support the nerve structures used for hearing. These are found in the cochlea.
Low bone density, osteoporosis, or a medical history of fractures could lead to higher risks of hearing loss. Regular hearing tests are important, especially when there’s an onset of hearing loss. Most hearing loss is so gradual that you don’t notice it. It may seem like everyone is mumbling. Hearing tests and immediate treatment is crucial to preserving your residual hearing.
Sudden Hearing Loss
According to the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, it’s unlikely, but sudden hearing loss can be common in patients with low bone density and osteoporosis.
Sudden hearing loss normally occurs in one ear and tends to happen all at the same time or within a few days. Nearly all sudden-onset hearing loss is “idiopathic”, which means that the cause is unknown. For the few numbers of cases where a cause is found, the connection to osteoporosis is a meaningful discovery.
Hypotheses about the onset of sudden hearing loss include a relationship with cardiovascular or cerebrovascular systems along with bone demineralization, inflammation, and endothelial dysfunction (issues involving blood vessel linings).
Osteoporosis and Balance
Some people with hearing loss also tend to have balance issues. This can lead to falls, bone fractures, and even death.
Prevent falls by wearing hearing aids, and if needed prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses, assistive listening devices, keeping up with an active lifestyle, and making sure there are safety measures in place where you live.
What should You lookout for if You Have Osteoporosis?
Pay close attention to your hearing health and your bone health. If your healthcare provider does not take that correlation seriously, advocate for yourself and make your concerns known.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
We’re raising awareness about potential hearing loss caused by loud noises. The inablity to hear can affect your speaking abilities. Not being able to hear after many years can impact your ability to remember the way speech sounds.
Better Hearing and Speech Month (BHSM) started in 1927. Every May, hearing health and speech issues are given a platform to remind people to take care of their hearing health and get it tested.
Identifying and intervening immediately when hearing loss is suspected is crucial for a better outcome. Most people live with hearing loss, but are often unaware that there’s a problem. Getting your hearing checked annually, or if you suspect you have hearing loss is crucial for proper care and treatment.
The first World Report on Hearing from the World Health Organization
Hearing Health Facts
On average, a person is born with nearly 16,000 hair cells in their inner ear. These cells pick up sounds and transfer them to the brain so that they can be interpreted into something that makes sense. Often, when people notice hearing loss that indicates that most of the hair cells are damaged. Between 30% to 50% of hair cells can be lost before a difference in your hearing can be measured through a hearing test. Once the hair cells in the inner ear are damaged, it’s permanent and they cannot regrow.
Noise not only harms hair cells but also damages auditory nerves that transfer information regarding sounds to the brain. Early stages of damage may not appear on your hearing test results.
There is no way to restore hearing that’s been lost. Preventative measures are the key. Wear earplugs or earmuffs if you are going to be in a loud environment or use loud tools. If you already have hearing loss, tinnitus, or experience pain/discomfort, be aware of your surroundings and protect your hearing so that it does not worsen.
For better hearing and communication, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Exposure to excessive noise is one of the top causes of hearing loss around the globe for the 466 million people who have moderate to severe hearing loss. Noise exposure can harm anyone’s hearing, but young people are especially prone to this risk due to their music listening habits. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that approximately 1.1 billion young people between the ages of 12 and 35 are risking their hearing health as a result of noise exposure during recreational settings.
International Noise Awareness Day helps to bring attention to the fact that noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is permanent but can be prevented by avoiding loud areas and protecting your hearing with earplugs/earmuffs or covering your ears when in contact with loud noises.
What Noise Levels are Considered to be Too Loud?
If you live in a quiet neighborhood or have a job in a quiet work environment, most of the sounds are at safe listening levels. However, there can be noises that are unsafe for your ears. Overexposure to noises from kitchen appliances, heavy traffic noises, subway trains, power tools, rock concerts, industrial work environments, or construction zones can damage your hearing.
Environmental sound intensity is measured in decibel (dBA) units. The softest sound that can be heard by a human ear is zero decibels (dB). Noises that are over 70 dB can harm your hearing over a prolonged amount of time. Loud noises that are over 120 dB can instantly harm your ears. Essentially, the louder the sounds are, the less time it takes to damage your hearing.
Many years of research have documented damage to the inner ear’s hair cells that is caused by excessive noise. Recurring pounding sounds of pressure against the nerve fibers may initially lead to temporary hearing loss, and then permanent damage. Any damage to these hair cells can cause permanent hearing loss.
Noise Exposure Raises the Risk of Tinnitus
Tinnitus - the phantom buzzing, chirping, ringing, or roaring noise in the ears or head - can be caused by exposure to loud noises. Tinnitus might ease over time, but in some cases continue as an irregular or permanent symptom.
One of the primary causes of tinnitus is noise. Some of the most common triggers of tinnitus are concerts, weddings, and receiving MRIs. In other cases, it can be caused by one very loud event or a sequence of exposures. Hearing aids or sound therapy may be recommended to mask the noise.
How NIHL Occurs
NIHL accumulates over time. Usually, people don’t notice the hearing loss until much later. By that time it’s too late the save what’s been lost. Hearing aids can help slow down the loss, but they cannot restore hearing.
With NIHL, you may begin to notice a problem with your hearing if you notice tinnitus right after the noise is heard, and/or sounds that are slightly muffled. Your ears are warning you that you have hearing loss if it’s difficult to understand others when they speak. Get your hearing tested immediately in this case.
If you start to notice noise-induced hearing loss or any other form of hearing loss, it’s a good idea to create a timeline and journal about your experiences so your hearing healthcare provider can get a better idea of what you’ve gone through.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
We’ve discussed many work environments that can contribute to hearing loss from construction zones to gyms. Well, it should be no surprise that musicians, especially rock musicians, are also vulnerable to hearing loss. Lots of famous musicians have hearing loss, tinnitus, or both. Research suggests that they are four times more likely to have hearing problems than the general population.
1. The former Nirvana and current Foo Fighters band member, Dave Grohl, recently revealed that he has had hearing loss for years. He cannot hear out of his left ear and crowded restaurants are the worst spots for him to visit. Masks make things worse for him. He read lips for 20 years, and has to remind people that he is a rock musician, he’s deaf, and he cannot hear what others are saying.
2. Pete Townshend of The Who has been open about his hearing loss for many years. He pinpointed the problem to studio headphones, not from playing live music.
3. Another member of The Who, Roger Daltry, said that he is “very, very deaf”.
4. Danny Elfman, who scored Edward Scissorhands, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Batman Returns, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and numerous other films, lost his hearing and developed tinnitus after playing frontman in his band Oingo Boingo.
5. Alice Cooper dons hearing aids after losing his hearing from being around loud rock music for 55 years.
6. Huey Lewis talked about how hearing loss and Menière’s disease cut his singing career short and recommended hearing aids.
7. Sting admitted that he has hearing loss, but still refused to get hearing aids.
8. Mick Fleetwood revealed that he has hearing loss, and played a “quiet” rock concert to raise awareness about hearing loss. The concert took place at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with 100 people in attendance. There were mixed responses. The band Eagles of Death Metal played two songs without amps. The audience listened with miniature radio receivers. Most just smiled. Later the band played three songs that were amplified through speakers, and the crowd jumped and danced around while waving their arms. The unamplified sound reached 62 decibels (dB) - which is normal - and the amplified sound reached 124 dB, which is the same noise level of a jet engine.
Fortunately, there’s more awareness about this issue today. Musicians can even wear customized earplugs that are specially designed to wear while performing at concerts.
If you are a musician, or someone who you know is a musician, with hearing loss please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
We’ve discussed in this blog the known risks that can contribute to hearing loss. Genetic factors, being born with hearing loss, noise-induced hearing loss, diet, and what you consume are just some of them. We’re going to go over the latest studies on the impact of hearing loss on smokers.
Whether you are a smoker or are exposed to secondhand smoke, the chemicals from cigarettes can have serious consequences on your health.
A study from this past January of 2022 exposed a connection between regular smokers and hearing difficulties. This study was published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, reviewed hearing loss patterns over a 30-year span that covered three groups: never/former smokers, people who quit smoking during the study, and smokers who continued smoking during the study. The smokers who never quit had poor results on their hearing tests.
Previous studies had similar patterns - the high risks affected non-smokers who live with a smoker. They were two times more likely to develop hearing loss than individuals who had no exposure. About 80 percent of the test subjects were unaware that the health of their hearing was affected.
It’s been shown that smoking is also closely related to dizziness, vertigo, and tinnitus.
Smoking’s Impact on Hearing Health
The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarettes reduces oxygen levels in the blood. They also constrict blood vessels throughout the body, which include the ones located in the inner ear which function to maintain the health of hair cells. Nicotine and cigarette smoke may:
Smoking and Tinnitus
Smoking may induce tinnitus, but more research is needed to verify this. There has been “sufficient evidence” that smoking is connected to tinnitus. This indicates that rates of tinnitus are higher in smokers than non-smokers, but there is no conclusive evidence of the direct cause-and-effect.
Smoking and Ear Infections
Smoking has been connected to ear infections in children and adults. The immune system becomes weaker and ravages tissues located in the nose and throat. This is what makes them more vulnerable to infections that harm the ears.
Due to the anatomy of children’s ears, they are already at a higher risk of ear infections. That risk becomes more serious when they come in contact with secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke can cause more frequent and more severe asthma attacks, infections to the respiratory system, ear infections, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). There have been some instances where middle ear infections in children caused loss of hearing.
Check out our article “What is the link between Vaping and Hearing Loss?” to learn more about the impact of vaping on hearing health.
Positive Outcomes from JAMA Study
According to the aforementioned 2022 JAMA study, former smokers had better hearing test results than those who smoked regularly. This proved that quitting can benefit your hearing health and your overall health.
The American Lung Association revealed that your blood pressure decrease and your circulation gets better 20 minutes after smoking your last cigarette. In about 8 hours, the carbon monoxide and oxygen levels in your body go back to normal. In about 48 hours, your sense of smell and taste will get better, while your nerve ending starts to regenerate.
If you have hearing loss and smoke, take the steps to quit smoking for good. If you are concerned about your hearing or notice hearing loss, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can be caused by so many different things like aging, head trauma, over-exposure to noise, genetics, or you can be born with it. These things impact the auditory nervous system, which results in sensorineural hearing loss. This is the most prevalent form of hearing loss. It happens when there’s damage to the inner ear nerves and hair cells that are caused by aging or noise damage. There is usually no medication or surgical procedure that can correct this, but hearing aids are a common form of treatment.
There is another, lesser-known type of hearing loss. This is called conductive hearing loss. This form of hearing loss impacts the outer or middle ear, unlike sensorineural hearing loss, which affects the auditory nerve. A blockage in the middle ear usually causes conductive hearing loss.
Conductive Hearing Loss Caused by Ear Infections
When the middle ear is vibrating, sounds are sent to your auditory nerve. Any blockage can hinder sounds from traveling through the middle ear and lead to hearing loss. An infection in the middle ear can lead to the build-up of fluid, restricting the vibration of the eardrum and the tiny bones connected to it.
Impacted earwax, fluid build-up in the middle ear, or a hole in the eardrum can also lead to conductive hearing loss.
The medical term for a middle ear infection is “otitis media”. This type of infection can lead to fluid build-up, and make it challenging for the eardrum and ossicular chain to cooperate and transfer sounds to the auditory nerve. The ossicular chain located in the middle ear is the three smallest bones in your body. They are called the malleus, incus, and stapes bone. Each of these bones is about the size of a single grain of rice.
Can an Ear Infection cause Hearing Loss?
When you talk about an ear infection, it typically refers to a middle ear infection or acute otitis media. This type of infection involves the area behind the eardrum where the three hearing bones (ossicles) are located. A person with this type of infection may need medical treatment, but it usually resolves itself naturally.
A mild form of conductive hearing loss can be temporary while the infection is still thriving. Permanent hearing loss is NOT usually a cause for concern. In some cases, if there are a number of long-term infections, the eardrum or middle ear can be permanently damaged and cause permanent hearing loss. Seek treatment immediately if you feel pain in your ears or sense an ear infection.
Hearing Loss Caused by Ear Infections, For the Most Part, Are Temporary
Hearing loss that is caused by an ear infection is normally temporary and goes away when it is treated. You may be given antibiotics. If they work, your hearing should revert back to normal. If you have a history of ear infections, fluid may be drained from your ears.
Getting rid of fluid buildup can bring relief to the pain and pressure that usually comes with an ear infection and can stop the eardrum from rupturing. If fluid continues to build up without any intervention, the pressure can lead to a rupture in the eardrum.
Recurring episodes of ear infections can lead to tympanosclerosis. This is when the tympanic membrane becomes thick and will scar. A perforated eardrum and tympanosclerosis can affect the eardrum’s function and worsen the ability to hear. If treatments from a primary care physician do not resolve the problem, hearing aids may be recommended.
If you, or a loved one, are experiencing hearing loss caused by an ear infection or for any other reason, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
What happens during Temporary Threshold Shift (TTS)?
You have most likely experienced this after leaving a concert: the noises you hear sound muffled, you notice feelings of fullness in your ears, and you might even hear tinnitus. The tiny hair cells in your ears came in contact with very powerful sound waves. This is known as temporary threshold shift (TTS). Hearing is usually recovered in these cases, and tinnitus goes away.
If you have symptoms of clogged ears or tinnitus, this could mean that your hearing is damaged. If you have recurrent episodes of TTS, permanent hearing loss could ensue.
How does the Ear become Damaged from Loud Noise?
Loud noises, whether it’s from a concert, earbuds with high volume settings, or a work environment, can seriously damage your hearing health. To better understand this, let’s go over how hearing works.
Essentially, sound travels into the ear and then stimulates the fluid located in the inner ear (A.K.A. the cochlea). The fluid produces waves across microscopic rows of hair cells. Every single hair cell is arranged in a tonotopic (tuned) manner to a particular frequency. This provides the best transmission of the sounds you hear.
There is Damage in Your Ear’s Cells
When loud sounds come in contact with your ears, the hair cells become distressed by becoming permanently bent over. This occurs even if there’s no noise. As a result, you may notice tinnitus, feelings of fullness in the ears, and temporary hearing loss.
High sound frequencies are affected when TTS occurs. This impacts the way you hear consonant sounds. In the English language, you may not be able to hear the difference between certain words, like “car” or “far”. This is an example of being able to hear, but not understand.
When it comes to TTS, your hearing threshold will recover to normal after a brief period.
Is TTS Serious?
The answer to this question isn’t clear-cut, because it’s a short-term symptom and for some people, things may seem normal for a while.
Even if the hearing loss is temporary, it’s not an excuse to regularly attend concerts, work environments, or loud recreational activities without protecting your hearing. If you experience too many instances of TTS, it may turn into a permanent threshold shift (PTS).
If you only experience TTS once, you probably won’t have permanent damage to your hearing.
Why does TTS Happen?
Overexposure to loud noises causes TTS. Concerts are a major culprit. Being near the speakers at a concert can endanger your ears to 110 decibels (dB).
It only takes over 70 dB to induce hearing loss. TTS is a type of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), but its impact is fleeting.
Other circumstances that can cause TTS are exposure to loud noises, like listening to music through earbuds/headphones, fireworks or an explosion that goes off near you, a gas-powered lawnmower, or an ambulance/police car siren.
How long can TTS Last?
TTS is a temporary symptom that can last anywhere from a couple of hours, a few days, or maybe several weeks.
The longer and more intense the exposure is, the stronger and longer-lasting the TTS could be.
Other influences could make an impact, such as an individual’s age, sex, history of noise exposure, frequented environmental settings, smoking, or diabetes.
How do You know when an Area is Too Loud?
Preventative Measures for TTS
It is unlikely that TTS will occur unexpectedly. The only cause is exposure to loud noise, so avoid these loud areas or be prepared to protect yourself.
It sounds simple but in the modern world, you may encounter many unexpected situations that could be a danger to your hearing. Loud machines or movie theaters can reach anywhere between 74 to 104 dB. You can still enjoy the movies by wearing earplugs that tune out most, but not all noises.
For earplugs that cancel out almost all noises, get earplugs that feature the highest noise reduction rating (NRR). If you are going to watch a movie in the theater, you can try earplugs that are designed for musicians.
If you are noticing hearing loss and need a hearing test, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
It’s World Hearing Day and this year’s theme from the World Health Organization highlights the significance of safe listening in order to protect healthy hearing as you age. A World report on hearing was introduced by the WHO in 2021. It emphasized the growing number of individuals who live with and are at risk of hearing loss. It focused on controlling noise levels as one of the seven main H.E.A.R.I.N.G. interventions and underscored the importance of alleviating loud sound exposure.
This year’s theme “To hear for life, listen with care” will concentrate on preventative measures for hearing loss via safe listening, along with the following messages:
What will be launched on World Hearing Day?
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss and/or tinnitus, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
There is still much to learn about the impact of menopause on hearing health. This is also the case with hormone therapy (HT). Research on mice and early human studies have suggested that taking estrogen can help protect your hearing. However, a different study with the current biggest data pool found the opposite to be true.
If you currently do not experience hearing loss, taking HT may increase your risk. This may occur whether it’s in pill or patch form and for formulas that contain estrogen on its own or when mixed with progesterone.
When the researchers studied data for over 47,000 female nurses over the course of 22 years, they determined that a course of HT for five to 10 years raised the risk of hearing loss in women by 15 percent compared to a woman who did not take HT.
There was a higher risk, the longer a woman continued taking HT. The study indicated that women who went through menopause later in life had an increased risk of hearing loss.
Hearing Loss and Tinnitus during Menopause
It is possible that your hearing abilities might change, or you might develop tinnitus as you reach menopause.
This happens when estrogen creates menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. Estrogen has an important role in your bones, brain, heart, muscles, and reproductive system. Estrogen receptors are located in hair cells and auditory pathways in the ear, but researchers are still learning how estrogen impacts hearing health.
Sex hormones become altered during a menstrual cycle and during menstruation, so your hearing abilities may become less sensitive. In the perimenopause phase - the years before the ovaries stop releasing eggs and your menstrual cycle ends - your ovaries slowly produce less and less estrogen. During the last year or second to last year of perimenopause, the drop in estrogen becomes more and more rapid. After your period ends, normally after you reach 45 years of age, the ovaries will produce only a small amount of estrogen, but you still receive some from your adrenal glands and fat tissue.
Low levels of estrogen can lead to hearing loss due to changes in blood flow to the cochlea - the hollow tube located in the inner ear. Another study measured hearing and blood levels of estradiol (a form of estrogen) in 1,830 postmenopausal women. In this research, it was found that the test subjects with less estradiol were more prone to experience hearing loss.
Does the Age of Onset Menopause Impact Your Hearing?
The connection between low estrogen levels and hearing loss indicates that women who enter menopause later, at age 50 or more - 51 is the average age of menopause in the U.S. - may have lower risks of hearing loss.
The data in 81,000 nurses showed that women with late natural menopause had a 10 percent higher risk of developing hearing loss. It’s uncertain as to why this occurs.
Advice on Hearing Health and Hormone Therapy
If you start hormone therapy, you should monitor your hearing and take HT only as necessary. Some women have had sudden hearing loss, tinnitus, and vertigo as a result of HT. Contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible if this happens to you.
How can Women Protect Their Hearing Health?
Engage in exercise, have a healthy diet, and keep a healthy weight. People who followed these diets have had significantly lower risks of hearing loss. A Mediterranean diet of fish, vegetables, and whole grains - while reducing meat and snack foods - is recommended.
Be aware of medications that can induce hearing loss, and make sure you reduce your exposure to dangerous noise levels by wearing hearing protection or avoiding loud areas altogether. For a complimentary hearing test and consultation, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing.
Hearing Loss can range from being mild to profound. If you experience mild hearing loss, there’s a high chance that you haven’t sought help and have forced yourself to fake your ability to hear in many circumstances.
Mild hearing loss can be serious, especially when it’s not treated early or at all. It can negatively impact the way you communicate with others - like your family members - to understand important information during a healthcare visit. The mild symptoms may be too subtle to immediately notice.
Mild Hearing Loss Defined
Symptoms of mild hearing loss are characterized as the inability to hear noises that are under 25 decibels (dB) for adults and 15 dB for children. These noises include whispered conversations, water droplets, rustling leaves, and birds singing. Low and high-pitched sound frequencies may also be challenging to hear. Most people lose their ability to hear high-pitched sounds (children and some women’s voices) first.
The degrees of hearing loss include normal, mild, moderate, moderately severe, severe, and profound. These ranges will be identified during a hearing test in the form of an audiogram. For the average adult, a normal range of hearing is between 0-25 dB. The normal range of hearing for children is between 0-15 dB.
Common Symptom of Mild Hearing Loss
You have the ability to hear but cannot comprehend conversations - especially when there’s too much background noise.
Mild Hearing Loss and Communication
If you have mild hearing loss, you are probably most comfortable in quiet settings where the conversation is limited to you and one other person. A noisy environment, if a person is facing away from you, or if they are standing too far from you can also cause communication problems.
The primary complaint about many people with mild hearing loss is that they can hear, but cannot clearly understand conversations.
Causes of Mild Hearing Loss
There are a number of possible causes for mild hearing loss. Some cases can be restored with prompt and proper treatment.
If medications or surgery cannot treat mild hearing loss, you should get fitted for hearing aids.
Digital hearing aid technology has changed so much since the earliest styles and they perform better in just about any environment. A proper hearing aid fitting and proper hearing aid programming will help you hear as best as you can.
Preventing Mild Hearing Loss
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is the only preventable type of hearing loss. Use protective hearing equipment, such as:
The only preventative measure that you can take is immediately seeking treatment. Whether it’s an ear infection or noise-induced, get help as soon as possible.
If you wear hearing aids and have mild hearing loss, you’ll have more options available than someone whose hearing has worsened to severe or profound loss. You might also be able to select more discreet styles that go in the ear canal if that’s the style that you want.
The Importance of Getting Treatment
As mentioned in this blog, untreated hearing loss can increase the risk of cognitive decline This can lead to higher risks of dementia and Alzheimer’s, compared to people without hearing problems. Isolation, depression, difficulty with communication, and falls can also be symptoms of untreated hearing loss.
Most people wait at least seven to 10 years before getting help. In the time frame, your hearing will worsen, and your brain will forget how to hear or will have difficulty identifying sounds. The ability to comprehend speech sounds also deteriorates over time.
Mild hearing loss that is noticed and treated immediately can give you better hearing and a better overall quality of life.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation. Our providers will guide you toward better hearing health so that you can live your best life.
Here’s our continuing coverage on COVID-19 and hearing health news.
A number of studies have concluded that COVID-19 can be linked to hearing loss, ear pain, dizziness, and tinnitus. So far, the studies indicated that COVID itself does NOT cause issues with hearing, but it’s possible that symptoms related to it can lead to hearing loss. Approximately 7-15% of patients with COVID have complained about hearing-related problems. There may be a higher risk of developing these symptoms if patients have been hospitalized.
COVID’s link to Hearing Loss Did Not Surprise People in the Hearing Healthcare Field
The reason why it didn’t surprise most that COVID and hearing loss is because:
Can Temporary or Permanent Hearing Loss Occur?
It is unknown how long hearing-related symptoms last and possible long-term outcomes. More research is necessary. If you are experiencing any new hearing problems, specifically if it’s sudden hearing loss and COVID-related, see your family doctor.
Risks of Waiting too long to see a Hearing Healthcare Provider
It is unknown as to what the long-term symptoms are from COVID-related hearing problems. We do understand those hearing problems can complicate methods of communication. This can lead to social isolation, depression, and loneliness. As a result, dementia or Alzheimer’s can set in.
If you are noticing hearing loss for any reason and believe hearing aids may be a solution, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you experienced a traumatic brain injury (also referred to as TBI, a concussion, or head injury), this can harm or even displace fragile bones located in the inner ear, rupture your eardrum, and even disrupt areas of the brain that help with auditory processing. Tinnitus could appear in one ear or both.
Some patients with TBI have complained about hyperacusis, or the experience of extreme sensitivity to sound. Also, any harm to the inner ear can negatively impact the vestibular system, which is composed of small fluid-filled canals that transfer signals about the position of your head to your brain. Extracting parts of the vestibular system causes spatial disorientation, dizziness, vertigo, and estimating distances.
The Prevalence of Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
According to the CDC, the 1.6 million TBI that occur annually is the result of contact sports, car crashes, and recreational activities. Out of those injuries, nearly 50% involve hearing loss or sudden-onset tinnitus. TBIs are common among football players. Nearly 10% of college players and 20% of high school players have a TBI. Among the elderly, falls are the primary cause of TBIs. These can be severe if they also take medication for blood-thinning.
Permanent or Temporary?
The overwhelming cases of hearing loss that is caused by TBI, go away naturally after a few months. While the brain heals, the auditory processing should resume. If there is a fractured or displaced bone, surgery can help. There are rare instances when permanent hearing loss occurs as a result of a damaged cochlea.
To prevent TBI, wear a helmet that will protect your head, along with any other protective headgear, while playing a sport that could lead to head trauma. If you drive a vehicle or are a passenger in one, always wear your seatbelt. In the wintertime, carefully step around icy areas and hold onto any available railings to reduce the chances of falling. Be careful when stepping into or out of a shower. It’s easy to slip and fall on a wet bathroom tile.
You should see a doctor immediately if you suffer from a traumatic brain injury. There are risks of hematoma (bleeding in the brain), and imaging tests need to be conducted. If there is a physical injury to the ear, you may need a CT or MRI scan.
If you are noticing hearing loss, hearing aids may be a solution. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
The symptoms of tinnitus include the buzzing, clicking, ringing, roaring, or whooshing noises that are heard when there are no external sound sources. It can cause distress and distract you from your daily life. It’s important to seek help and monitor your hearing health before it worsens.
Nearly 15-20% of Americans have experienced tinnitus at least one time. While it can happen to anyone, it’s pervasive among adults and seniors. There is currently no definite cure for tinnitus, so taking preventative cautions is crucial.
What are the signs of tinnitus?
As previously mentioned a buzzing, clicking, ringing, roaring, or whooshing noise may only be heard by you. There are various frequencies and tones to the noise. If you notice tinnitus, write down what you are experiencing. Keep a journal to record when you started hearing these noises, in what situations/environments you notice the sounds and anything else you feel is worth noting. Bring this information with you when you talk to your hearing instrument specialist about treatment options.
Discuss the sounds you are hearing with the people around you, who can provide accurate assessments if you think you are experiencing tinnitus.
What causes tinnitus?
The main causes of tinnitus are due to underlying conditions, such as injuries to the ears or poor blood circulation. Think about possible reasons that brought about the symptoms. This will help your hearing healthcare provider give you proper treatment options.
Frequent exposure to loud noises, or even just one exposure to a very loud noise, can induce tinnitus symptoms. The tiny hair cells in the inner ear can become damaged from the sounds, which leads to false impulses that are transmitted to the brain. This is what causes tinnitus.
Aging, and the hearing health problems related to aging, can cause tinnitus. Diabetes, unhealthy blood vessels, autoimmune diseases, changes in bone growth throughout the ears, muscle spasms, ear infections or obstructions, head, neck, or ear injuries could also cause tinnitus. Like with any health condition, detecting the problem early will lead to earlier treatment, which may help reduce any serious impacts.
Tinnitus is common in men, the older population, regular smokers, and alcoholics who are regularly exposed to loud noises. Take your job environment into consideration, and wear ear protection when working under loud conditions. Any underlying health conditions such as arthritis and obesity should be carefully monitored.
What are the impacts of tinnitus?
The frequency of tinnitus is different for everyone. Most people who experience tinnitus find it to be distressing and bothersome. They may suffer from fatigue, headaches, depression, stress, an inability to focus, problems with accomplishing tasks, and disruption in their sleep routines.
What preventative measures should be taken?
Always carry around small earplugs or noise-canceling earmuffs if you are going to work in a noisy area. For example, if you are employed in an industrial workplace that has loud machinery make sure you are wearing earplugs. Your employer should also be able to provide the proper ear protection in these situations.
Avoid overconsumption of alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine. Make sure you are exercising and following a healthy diet. This will help with your overall health, which will help your hearing health.
Listen to music and media at lower volumes. If you need to turn the volume up, to the point where others complain about the level you should seek help for your hearing.
What treatment options are available?
Hearing aids that feature a masking option may be used to treat your tinnitus and hearing loss. Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing to set up an appointment for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Maybe you know a thing or two about what it’s like to have hearing loss, but here are 16 facts that you may not know about.
If you or a loved one are noticing hearing loss, get your hearing checked immediately. A hearing test and proper treatment can help save hearing loss or slow it down from getting worse. Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
If you currently experience hearing loss, protect your hearing from getting worse and discover what helps you hear better.
How to Stop Your Hearing from getting Worse
Medication and surgery are not treatment options for noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Hair cells that are damaged cause permanent hearing loss, so it’s very important to protect your hearing. If you experience hearing loss, here are some tips to stop or slow down the additional loss.
Consider a Device to Help You Hear
Assistive Listening Devices (ALD)
If you or a loved one notices a change in hearing abilities, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Pay Attention to Hearing Loss
In some cases, hearing loss is immediately noticeable. In other instances hearing loss can start to occur before you realize that you can no longer to hear certain sounds or comprehend speech. Loss of hearing can happen due to nerve damage in the ear, which results in your brain not being able to interpret speech the same way that healthy ears can. Hearing loss can be temporary or become permanent. Either way, seek help as soon as you notice there’s something wrong with how well you can hear. Temporary hearing loss can become permanent when essential parts of the ear are damaged and cannot be restored.
Hearing Loss caused by Loud Noise
Loud noise is incredibly detrimental to the inner ear (cochlea). It only takes one very loud exposure to noise or listening to loud sounds for a lengthy amount of time, to induce hearing loss. Cells and membranes found in the cochlea can become damaged from loud noise. Over-stimulation from listening to loud noises for an extensive amount of time can exhaust hair cells, which can cause them to die off. They cannot regrow. This is what causes permanent hearing loss.
Hearing loss can become progressive if the exposure to loud noise continues. Additional harm can affect hearing health after the noise exposure ends. Any damage to the inner ear or auditory neural system is usually permanent.
The Harm that is done to Hair Cells can Accelerate Hearing Loss
On average, each person is born with approximately 16,000 hair cells which are located in their cochlea. These cells let your brain identify sounds. Nearly 30% to 50% of hair cells can be harmed or destroyed before shifts in your hearing become measurable through a hearing test. When you start to notice hearing loss, numerous hair cells are already destroyed and beyond repair.
After attending a loud event like a concert, you may have a hard time hearing. Quiet voices may sound muffled or you might experience tinnitus. If no damage was done, your hearing will usually return within a couple of hours or a few days. Like blades of grass, hair cells will curve a little more if the sound is louder. They will straighten out after it recovers from being in contact with the sounds.
In other instances, if loud noise destroys too many hair cells, some will die. Recurring exposure to loud noise can eventually damage a lot of hair cells. You may slowly have a harder time understanding others when they speak, especially if there’s background noise. If hearing loss progresses, it could become more challenging to comprehend speech in quiet environments.
Noise Exposure can Harm Nerves in the Ears
Noise can also harm the auditory nerve that transfers information about sounds to the brain. Early damage may not appear on your hearing test, but it can cause ‘hidden hearing loss’. This can make it challenging to understand speech in noisy settings. Loud noise exposure can impact your ability to hear as you age. It also impacts how quickly you might develop hearing loss, even when you are not exposed to noises.
If you or a loved one are noticing any changes in the ability to hear, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Are You a Hearing Aid User with an Active Lifestyle? Here are some Tips for Keeping Your Hearing Aids and Hearing Health in Shape.
Exercise is an important part of maintaining your overall health. If you’re a hearing aid user who practices physical exercises regularly, it’s advised that you wear your devices during workout sessions.
3 Reasons why Hearing Aids should be used during Exercise Routines
Be prepared by bringing Hearing Aid Gear during Workouts
To get the most out of your workout, reduce distractions and feel confident while wearing your hearing aids by being prepared. Here’s a suggestion of supplies you should keep with you.
How to take care of Your Hearing Aids after Your Workout
If you frequently work out, be cautious about wear and tear. This will help your hearing aids last longer, after each workout session.
Keep up an Active Lifestyle
According to the Hear the World Foundation, 70 percent of hearing aid users have said that they wear their hearing aids while participating in sports and did not experience any problems. About 37 percent of users said they enjoy participating in sports more when wearing them. So if you aren’t already wearing hearing aids while playing sports, try it out.
Be aware of Dangerous Noise Levels in the Gym
Gyms are well-known for blasting music too loudly during workout sessions. This can lead to hearing loss and tinnitus. If you lift very heavy weights, while holding your breath, this can also cause hearing loss and tinnitus. It’s important to protect your ears from lesser-known risks to hearing health. Special settings can be programmed into your hearing aids for all sorts of environments, like gyms.
Contact us at Pure Sound Hearing and talk to one of our hearing instrument specialists about programming a customized setting in your hearing aids before your next visit to the gym, or workout session from home.
Do you have older family members who lost their hearing when they were younger, or have experienced difficulties with their balance or even dizziness? Talk to them and learn more about their health issues, it could be genetic.
Hearing Loss within the Family
Types of hearing loss, like presbycusis (age-related hearing loss), can be affected by genetic factors. Essentially, you can acquire an increased risk of hearing loss as you age.
More research is required, but in a study on 376 Caucasian families, genetic influences are a part of presbycusis. The study also noted that even though men generally have more instances of hearing loss, mainly due to noise exposure in traditionally male-dominated jobs, women’s hearing loss was mainly caused by genetic factors.
It is difficult to sift through other components that may impact these studies - such as people’s behaviors that can lead to hearing loss. Families may share the same occupations and habits, so it’s unknown as to whether it’s their genes or the similar behaviors that are connected to hearing loss. It may be a combination of the two.
Be Curious About Your Family‘s Health History
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have stressed the importance of learning about your family’s health history and helping you reduce the risks of developing any potentially avoidable health issues. It is recommended that you create a list of immediate family members, and ask if they have any chronic or severe illnesses and what age they developed them. Share this information with family members and your family doctor. This information can help your doctor determine the proper tests and what age you should start these screenings.
Otosclerosis occurs when there is abnormal bone growth in the middle ear and affects the stapes bone. Some symptoms of otosclerosis include a gradual loss of hearing, usually struggling to hear low-pitched sounds. Other symptoms may include dizziness, tinnitus, or problems with balance.
The risks of developing otosclerosis are based on your family’s history with the disease. It is usually a genetic problem that is passed from parent to child. A child who has one parent that was diagnosed with otosclerosis has a 25 percent chance of developing the disease. There’s a 50 percent chance if both parents have the disease. The demographic that is at most risk are middle-aged white women.
Conductive hearing loss can be the result of the disease. Surgery can usually fix this problem. In rare instances, otosclerosis can damage sensory cells and nerve fibers located in the inner ear, which can induce sensorineural hearing loss.
If you or a loved one are experiencing hearing loss or difficulty with hearing for any reason, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss can happen to anyone, and be caused by anything. Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid it. You can reduce those chances by being aware of possible symptoms. The obvious factors, like a loud blast or repeated exposure to intense noises, are obvious causes of hearing loss, but one lesser-known cause is weight gain.
The holidays have ended, and you may have noticed some weight gain after eating all of those delicious foods.
How Obesity Impacts Hearing Health
Obesity can be a heated topic for many people, but some things are undeniable about it: cholesterol that builds in the arteries can lead to blood clots and inhibit proper blood flow. Like every functioning organ in the body, blood flow is needed to make sure that your ears function properly. Bad cholesterol levels that obstruct your arteries cause strain, and as a result, your ear health can be permanently damaged. Obesity is not a direct cause of hearing problems, but there is a higher risk of experiencing hearing loss due to other health factors and obesity can worsen these issues.
What Changes Can You Make to Lower Your Risks?
You can avoid hearing loss by:
You can have high cholesterol whether you are obese or not, so it’s still important to monitor your diet.
If you, or a loved one, are noticing hearing loss contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Temporary hearing loss can be caused by so many different factors, including infections, impacted earwax, or exposure to loud noises. In many instances, this type of hearing loss is mild and it goes away very quickly. In other cases, consistent or severe hearing loss that suddenly progresses should always be addressed by your hearing healthcare provider. Here’s a list of the most common causes of temporary hearing loss.
5 causes of Temporary Hearing Loss
1. Middle Ear Infections
If the region behind the eardrum fills up with bacterial fluid, there’s a good chance that an infection will develop. It’s important to note that the middle ear has a passageway that leads to the back of the throat, so an ear infection can spread due to the flu or virus. These infections are usually found in children, and they may briefly affect their hearing abilities. Typically, only one ear is affected.
An infection in the middle ear can cause fluid build-up as the body tries to fight against the infection. Ear pressure caused by the fluids can affect the middle ear bones, which are used in hearing. In some instances, these fluids create a lot of pressure to the point where the eardrum can become punctured and discharge blood and pus from the ear. A ruptured eardrum can be painful, but it can usually heal itself when the infection is gone.
You can use antibiotics to treat these infections. If you are given an antibiotic for your ear infection, do not stop taking them because you are feeling better. It’s important to continue taking the medication until the infection is gone to make sure the infection is completely gone. Please be aware that some antibiotics can cause hearing loss. Talk to a hearing healthcare provider when considering treatment options.
2. Swimmer’s Ear
If you have recently gone swimming and now have itchy ears, pain, or feelings of fullness in the ears, you might have swimmer’s ear. This is an outer ear infection that occurs in the outer canal when water stays in your ear after being submerged in a body of water. It can infect one or both ears, and it can cause ear pain.
Did you scratch your ears and can’t hear? Swimmer’s ear can also occur as a result of an abrasion or a scratch on your ear canal from using cotton swabs, hairpins, or your finger to clean your ear canal. Please refrain from placing anything small inside your ear canal. This can damage your eardrum.
Again, you can use antibiotics to treat this infection. Your hearing can go back to normal with the proper treatment. Take preventative measures by making sure you get rid of any water that gets trapped inside your ear canal.
3. Loud Noises
Any exposure to very loud noises - whether you’re at a concert, or using power tools without ear protection - can cause temporary hearing loss.
What causes this to happen? The inner ears feature tiny hair cells that gather and transmit sound waves to the brain. These hair cells can become damaged due to very loud noise exposure. It normally affects both ears, although the severity of hearing damage can be worse in the ear that was exposed to more noise. There is usually no pain. Noise-induced hearing loss is sometimes permanent.
As soon as you realize your ears have been damaged, rest your ears immediately. If possible, refrain from being exposed to any more noise by using earplugs or covering your ears with your hands.
In most cases involving exposure to loud noises, the hearing should return in a short amount of time. There may be some permanent damage to the ear’s hair cells. If your hearing does not get better in a day or so, seek professional help.
Remember to carry earbuds or earmuffs that help block out loud noises, if you’re going to be in a loud environment.
A combination of continuous muffled hearing and ringing ears is a sign of tinnitus, which can be caused by exposure to loud noises. Be mindful of the volume, and turn it down on your devices. Where hearing protection.
4. Earwax Buildup
Earwax helps trap dust and other tiny particles that enter your ears before they reach your eardrums. Earwax naturally falls out of your ear canals, but sometimes the wax becomes impacted and obstructs the ear canals. This blockage can lead to sudden hearing loss in one or both ears, which can interfere with sound waves as they make their way through the ear canal and towards the eardrum. A malfunctioning eardrum can lead to poor hearing. It can affect one or both ears and usually doesn’t cause pain.
5. Side Effects from Medication
Some easily accessible drugs, like aspirin, have been connected to hearing loss and tinnitus in both ears. If you notice anything different about your hearing after taking a new medication, inform your healthcare provider. You may be advised to switch medications. This form of hearing loss is typically temporary, but there are some instances - particularly if another medication isn’t available for serious conditions - when hearing loss can become permanent.
Don’t ignore hearing loss, whether it’s temporary or you have been experiencing it for a while now. Untreated hearing loss can worsen and cause additional problems other than the inability to hear.
Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing aid providers.
Whether you are listening to nature sounds, the noise of laughter after a funny joke, or becoming aware of a warning signal from an emergency, hearing is a fundamental part of life.
Think about the ways that hearing, or the lack of hearing, impacts your life.
1. Be Aware of Initial Signs of Hearing Loss
The World Health Organization reports that over 466 million people have a disabling form of hearing loss. It is crucial to be aware of the first signs of hearing loss so that you can immediately seek help. Immediately getting help from a healthcare provider can potentially save your hearing. If you notice muffled sounds when others speak, trouble hearing over the phone or in a crowded area, struggle hearing women’s or children’s voices, or other family members or colleagues notice you can’t hear very well, get a hearing test.
2. Reduce Exposure to Noise
The only preventable form of hearing loss is noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), yet it is the most prevalent form of hearing in children and adults. Make sure you wear hearing protection before being exposed to things like loud music, fireworks, or power tools. If possible, avoid these areas altogether or limit the amount of time you spend there.
Be aware that your work environment may also cause hearing loss. Your employer is responsible for providing any hearing protection - such as earplugs or industrial style ear muffs - that you may need as a result of being exposed to loud noises on the job.
3. Do Not stick anything inside Your Ear Canal
Many people have the habit of using cotton swabs in their ear canal. It’s a dangerous habit that can injure your ears.
Inserting anything into your ear canal, like cotton swabs, actually pushes the earwax deeper into your ear canal. This can cause impacted earwax. If you must remove excess earwax, wipe it off of your ears with a warm soft cloth after your shower or bath. You may also soften the wax using ear drops, warm olive oil, water, or a commercial solution. It is not advised to use any of these if you have a perforated eardrum. If you are noticing any pain, hearing loss, or blockage, please contact us for an evaluation.
4. To Hear Healthy, Eat Healthy
A proper diet and exercise are not only beneficial to hearing health, but also to your overall health.
Fruits, vegetables, and legumes should be incorporated into a well-balanced diet. To help with the steady flow of inner ear fluid, eat potassium-rich foods like bananas. Consume other foods that are rich in vitamins A, C, and E, and minerals such as folate, magnesium, and zinc.
Take a look at these articles for more advice on what to eat to improve your hearing:
Which Vitamins and Minerals May Help Stop Hearing Loss?
What Seasonal Autumn Foods can Improve Your Hearing Health?
5. Get Your Hearing Tested on a Regular Basis
Just like your other annual health check-ups, hearing health should be tested every year. Getting regular check-ups on your hearing can help catch any potential issues that you may have. Noticing problems early can help avert more serious situations in the future.
Get in touch with us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation with one of our hearing instrument specialists. We offer a number of hearing aids that can be programmed and tailored for your specific listening needs.
It’s very difficult to escape from noises that we encounter on a day-to-day basis. Kids and teens have a lower hearing threshold than the average adult, making them more vulnerable to hearing loss.
They are often placed in noisy settings like a loud band room, or they are constantly listening to loud music, media, or video games with their headphones. Toys that make too much noise can also be dangerous.
According to the CDC, about 14.9% of children between the ages of 6 and 19 have some range of hearing loss. Parents should be more aware of this. Dangerous noises that we often come across include:
The closer you are to the source of the sound, the louder it will be. Under these conditions, children are at higher risk of hearing loss. Spending one evening to see fireworks up close could instantly lead to hearing loss. Their daily environment at school can be too noisy, from bells ringing to loud chatter in a crowded hallway.
One of the main causes of hearing loss in children is dangerous listening habits. Children and teens generally listen to music, watch videos, or play games with earbuds resting snugly in their ears while the volume is turned up.
For teens who are traveling to and from school, they tend to blast the volume to cut out the background noise. Even though that usually works, the risks of hearing loss become higher.
The maximum volume level on personal listening devices can reach up to 100 decibels (dB). This is the same volume as an extremely loud leaf blower. It’s dangerous for anyone, especially kids to listen to loud music that’s blaring directly into their ears.
Protect Your Child’s Hearing Health
Talk to your children, or grandchildren about noise levels. Make them aware of the damage that can happen to their hearing. Rules need to be set for a safe listening routine. Volume levels should be kept at 60 dB or lower for babies, 82 dB or lower for children, 70-85 dB for teens.
If your children don’t take you seriously, find real accounts of people living with hearing loss and show them how difficult it can sometimes be to navigate through life with it.
If you, your child, or grandchild experience hearing loss, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.
Hearing loss not only affects the person who has it, but it also affects anyone with whom they interact, how they walk, increases risks of falling, and raises the risks of dementia.
In a study that was conducted by a research team from Johns Hopkins, they found that even mild hearing loss doubled the risk for dementia. Those with moderate hearing loss are three times more likely to develop dementia and those with severe hearing loss are five times at risk of developing dementia.
Hearing and Overall Health
Results of brain scans from participants in the study showed that hearing loss might contribute to higher rates of brain atrophy. Individuals with hearing loss tend to become more isolated, which contributes to anxiety, depression, and dementia. When you’re not hearing at your best, avoiding others, or less participation in conversations happens more often. All of these elements can lead to dementia.
As you navigate through different environments, your ears harness subtle cues that support your balance. The inability to hear these vital signals can lead to imbalance and falls. Your brain also struggles just to process sound. This can lead to listening fatigue. This subliminal multitasking may interfere with how your brain controls your ability to safely walk.
Causes and Symptoms
Hearing loss can be caused by:
Experiencing difficulty with hearing soft or high-pitched sounds is the first sign of damaged stereocilia - the fragile hair cells that transmit sound waves to electrical signals in the ear.
Soft sounds are conversations that take place over the phone or background noises in busy settings like a restaurant. Examples of high-pitched sounds include children’s voices and some women’s voices. Tinnitus is also a sign of possible hearing loss.
4 Myths about Hearing Aids that Stop Some from Using Them
There are no drawbacks to wearing hearing aids if you experience difficulty with hearing. They are beneficial to most individuals who use them. Being able to engage with friends, family members, colleagues, and other acquaintances can make a huge difference in a person’s life. It just takes time and patience.
People of all ages can have some range of hearing loss, but few people use hearing aids. Different factors such as affordability, flat-out denial of having hearing problems, the stigma that some people still associate with wearing hearing aids, or any other personal reason, may prevent people who need hearing aids from getting them.
Myth #1: My hearing loss isn’t too bad
The average hearing aid user waits 10 years before seeking guidance for their hearing problems. It is during this timespan when communication with others becomes challenging, and there are higher risks of isolation which impacts overall health. Advocate for your health.
Myth #2: Hearing aids are for old people
People of all ages, from newborns to senior citizens, have hearing loss and some of them also wear hearing aids. Some people want to hide their hearing loss because they think it’s proof that they are aging. Having a hearing loss might seem like a sign of weakness or incompetence, but it’s actually all about figuring out the best way to communicate that works for you. That could include wearing hearing aids, using an assistive listening device, using a voice-to-text/caption app, using sign language, or any other method of communication. Staying connected to others helps your brain stay healthy and less isolated.
Myth #3: Hearing aids don’t look cool
First of all, these days, just about everyone has something in their ear. It could be earbuds, air pods, or hearing aids. No one thinks twice if they see something in your ear, or even notice that there’s something in your ear.
Hearing aids are available in many sizes and styles from completely-in-canal (CIC) to behind-the-ear (BTE). Proper fittings by a hearing instrument specialist can ensure no whistling sounds and a comfortable experience while wearing them. Whether you're looking for hearing aids that are discreet or a pair that is visible and colorful, we’ve got you covered at Pure Sound Hearing.
Myth #4: Hearing aids are complicated to use
With proper guidance and a trial period, adjusting to hearing aids can be a smooth transition. Trying out hearing aids is important before making a final choice. Our hearing instrument specialists will help you through this stage of adjustment. Hearing aid demonstrations, training, and guidance with the right pair of hearing aids are all necessary for an optimal listening experience.
If you need a hearing test and consultation for hearing aids, please contact us at Pure Sound Hearing for a complimentary hearing test and consultation.