Noise-related hearing loss is exceptionally common. If you are continuously exposed to noise that exceeds 85 decibels, your hearing may be irreversibly impaired.
Exactly How Does Noise-Related Hearing Loss Work?
There are little hair cells in your inner ear which can be permanently harmed by loud noise. This is known as sensorineural hearing loss.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by long-term subjection to extremely high levels of noise, which causes a gradual decline of your hearing. It can also be caused by a single instance of a loud burst of noise that can immediately result in loss of hearing.
Over 17 percent of individuals between the ages of 20 and 69 have hearing loss that is a result of their work or recreational activities. Some illustrations of noises that can cause hearing loss may include:
- Emergency Vehicles
- Nearby fireworks
- Busy Traffic
- Construction equipment
- Loud headphoness
- Jet engines
Is it Reversible?
Although scientists are making advancements, currently, there isn’t a cure for noise induced hearing loss. Some of the damage inside your ear could be caused by swelling so you need to consult a doctor if you have been subjected to sudden loud noise. If you could decrease the swelling you might be capable of reducing some lasting damage. Waves of sound are sent to the brain by the little hair cells inside of the ear. If noise damages or destroys them, they are unable to regenerate. This means that your hearing ability will be permanently affected. Safeguarding your ears, then, should be top priority, and consulting a specialist if you are currently having hearing issues.
Research to Address The Issue
There is currently no cure for this condition. But restoring noise-induced hearing loss is top priority for scientists. For example, some studies are in clinical trials presently that are evaluating whether a drug can repair the growth of the little hairs in the ear. If scientists were able to get this drug to work, these hairs would be able to regenerate and we may be able to overcome noise and age related hearing loss.
Protect Your Remaining Hearing
While hearing loss that is caused by noise cannot be repaired (yet), you are able to take certain steps to reduce hearing loss or protect the remaining hearing that you have. You can:
- Minimize your exposure to extremely noisy activities at home
- If there are places that regularly have loud noise – stay away from them
- Use the appropriate hearing protection devices, such as earmuffs or earplugs if you work in locations with consistently loud noises
- Get tested regularly
- Whatever your hearing loss may be, hearing aids could be the solution
Lowering the volume on your devices, wearing ear protection, and avoiding overly loud noise is the best way to safeguard your hearing. Make an appointment for a hearing exam if you have been exposed to loud noise.