Your Hearing – Why It’s So Important to Protect and Preserve It
Protecting your hearing is extremely important because once we lose our hearing, it can’t be fully restored. Our ears are essential sensory organs that help us communicate with others, navigate our environment, and enjoy music and other sounds. Lucid Hearing wants to help you and your family with everything related to holistic hearing from protection (https://www.etymotic.com/hearing-protection/) to treatment (https://lucidhearing.com/shop) to enjoyment (https://westoneaudio.com/). That’s why it offers the latest educational information on its website and a wide range of products to ensure your entire family is informed about hearing health at every stage of life.
Protecting Your Hearing While You Still Have it is Especially Critical
Consistent exposure to loud noises, whether it's from listening to music with headphones at high volumes, attending loud concerts or events, working with noisy machinery or equipment, or living in a noisy urban environment, can cause irreversible damage to our hearing. Damage caused by loud noises is cumulative, which means that even brief exposure to loud sounds can add up over time and lead to hearing loss, making it difficult to communicate with others, enjoy music or other sounds, and even perform daily tasks.
Lucid Hearing wants you to fully capture all the moments of your life – the laughter, the important conversations with loved ones and friends, the songs, the sounds that nature offers and even your four-legged family members barking! As long as you have good hearing, take steps to protect it. Read on to learn more about the importance of hearing protection.
Younger Folks May Want to “Listen” Up
While hearing loss is typically associated with affecting the older population, there are studies that suggest that younger people between the ages of 25-40 may be at risk for hearing loss. One study published in the International Journal of Audiology found that individuals between the ages of 25 and 34 were more likely to have hearing loss than previously thought, possibly due to exposure to loud noise. Another study published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery found that young adults between the ages of 18 and 39 were experiencing hearing loss at a faster rate than previous generations, likely due to increased exposure to loud noise from personal electronic devices (using headphones at high volume), participation in recreational activities that involve loud noise (like attending concerts) and certain medications.
It's important for individuals of all ages to take steps to protect their hearing, such as wearing earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones in loud environments, keeping the volume at a moderate level when using headphones or earbuds, and taking breaks from noisy environments. Regular hearing screenings can also help detect hearing loss early on when it may be easier to treat.
Occupational Noise Exposure Can Contribute to Hearing Loss
In general, workers in industries such as construction, manufacturing, mining, and transportation are at a higher risk for noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) due to exposure to loud machinery, equipment, and tools. According to OSHA, approximately 22 million workers are exposed to potentially damaging noise levels in the workplace each year in the United States.
For musicians, the risk of NIHL can be due to exposure to loud music during performances and rehearsals, as well as through the use of headphones or earbuds when practicing or listening to music. The risk of NIHL can vary depending on the type of music, the duration of exposure, and the distance from the sound source.
While there are no definitive percentages of individuals by category who have suffered hearing loss due to work-related noise, studies have shown that NIHL is a common occupational hazard. According to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States, approximately 24% of hearing difficulty among U.S. workers is attributable to occupational noise exposure. Additionally, a study of professional orchestral musicians found that 43% of them experienced hearing loss.
It's important for employers to take steps to protect workers from excessive noise exposure, such as through the use of engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment (such as earplugs or earmuffs). Musicians can also take steps to protect their hearing, such as through the use of in-ear monitors, reducing the duration and intensity of practice and performance, and taking breaks to allow their ears to rest.
Lucid Hearing’s mission is to help people throughout their entire hearing health journey, and the industry leader offers free hearing assessments, hearing aids for treatment, and protective devices to help preserve hearing and prevent hearing loss. Learn more about all of Lucid Hearing’s products and stay on top of your own hearing health by scheduling a hearing test today.