You rely on your hearing much more than you probably realize. Unfortunately, when problems occur, it's not always possible to completely restore your hearing. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do prevent hearing loss. The professionals at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard and Camarillo, CA, explain how you can protect yourself.
Avoid loud noises
Exposure to loud noises can damage your hearing. In some instances, your hearing may be affected after only one exposure to a very loud sound, but in other cases, problems only develop after long-term exposure. If you enjoy listening to music through headphones, don't turn the sound all the way up. Wear earplugs to decrease the noise of concerts, power tools, lawnmowers and firecrackers. If you work in a noisy environment, be sure to wear the ear protection provided by your employer, or purchase your own protection if none is provided.
Make smart choices when it's impossible to avoid loud noises. For example, if you're attending a concert, don't sit near a speaker or next to the stage. Noise that's 85 decibels (dB) or higher can harm your hearing. Conversations are usually conducted at no higher than 60 dB, while jackhammers produce 130 dB. Both the decibel level and the length of time you're exposed to the noise determine if you'll experience hearing loss.
Ask about medication side effects
Some medications, such as diuretics, antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and chemotherapy medications, can cause hearing loss, particularly if you take them regularly. Ask your doctor if prescribed medications can cause hearing loss and request drugs that don't have these side effects, if possible.
Stay away from cigarettes
Smoking cigarettes, cigars and pipes not only increases your risk of heart disease and cancer, but also makes it more likely that you experience hearing loss. Even secondhand smoke exposure can be a problem.
Make time for a hearing screening in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard and Camarillo
Hearing loss can be so subtle that you don't even realize that you have a problem. Regular hearing screenings can identify issues, making it possible to successfully treat the problem before your hearing loss becomes severe.
Are you concerned about your hearing? Schedule a visit and hearing screening at West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat with locations in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard and Camarillo, CA.