Listen up! Every year on May 31st, Save Your Hearing Day is observed. It is a time to remember that your hearing is vital and should be protected, as some hearing loss is actually avoidable. 10 million Americans have already suffered irreversible hearing damage from noise, while another 30 million are exposed to dangerous levels of noise every day.
Seniors can experience a loss of hearing for many different reasons. For example, you can have hearing loss due to a decline in your health, a genetic disorder or environmental cause. For those seniors who have been exposed to repeated, long-term loud or high-decibel noises, hearing loss is to be expected.
Loud noise is the most common causes of hearing loss. For seniors who worked in noisy factories, exposed to the roar of loud machinery for years at a time, hearing loss is extremely common. One single shot from a shotgun at close range while hunting could damage your hearing permanently as well.
Save Your Hearing Day is an opportunity for seniors to learn what you can do to avoid hearing loss and then put that knowledge to practice. So, what can you do to protect your hearing? Try the following tips:
- Your number one defense against loud noise is hearing protection. Use foam or silicone ear plugs or ear muffs. You can pick up plugs at almost any store, while the muffs can be found at sporting or safety equipment stores.
- Limit your exposure to noisy activities. If you must be exposed to loud noises, limit the amount of time and always use ear plugs.
- Try turning down the volume of your TV, radio or iPod.
- Try to purchase products that produce lower noise levels, such as a lawnmower. You can compare their dB ratings to find out how much noise is produced. The lower the number, the better it is for your ears!
- Be aware that some medications can be dangerous to your hearing. Talk to your doctor about the hearing-related effects of your medications.
Seniors don’t have to just accept that a loss of hearing comes with old age! Celebrate Save Your Hearing Day by doing all you can to keep your hearing healthy for years to come.