Hearing Loss: Its a noisy business
You would be forgiven for assuming that age is the primary contributor to hearing loss. The fact of the matter is that hearing loss’s fundamental contributor is not because of age but rather noise. More specifically, continual noise exposure which exceeds healthy decibel limits.
The key learning from this article: most of the hearing loss you will experience in your life will be determined by the decisions you make throughout your lifetime, this is comforting news because it means that the power lies with you and not only with the imminent maturity of one's years.
Modern lifestyles are enveloped by noises which we cannot change or avoid, from radio levels to busy street traffic; our ears are subjected to a lot of noise abuse on a day to day basis. But through awareness and education, if you can learn to manage your exposure to certain decibel levels, you can preserve and care for one of the most vital senses we have the privilege of experiencing as human beings.
Understanding decibels is a great place to start. Decibels are the measuring units used to identify the intensity/power of a sound; or the strength of the vibration which physically moves the hair cells in your inner ear. If you look at this infographic, you will notice that your middle ear (section number #3) is made up of three tiny bones which transfer these decibels/vibrations to specialised hair cells in your inner ear (part number #4).
These hair cells are susceptible and easily damaged when exposed to powerful sound vibrations for an extended period. A good formula to follow is the louder the sound the less time you should be exposing yourself to it.
Sound levels which are higher than 140 decibels (such as fireworks and gunshots) can cause immediate nerve damage in your ear. When you find yourself in any of these environments be sure to wear protective ear gear that will ensure the safety of your hearing, even plugging your ears with your fingers will protect your ears up to 80% from irreparable damages.
We will be exploring safe sound zones with hearing works in our next infographic so be sure to check it out when you get a chance.
Protect your ears and love your hearing with Hearing Works.