Noise-related hearing loss is very common. Your hearing can be permanently damaged if you spend a lot of time exposed to noise that exceeds 85 dB.
What is Noise-Related Hearing Loss?
This is a type of sensorineural hearing loss where hair cells in your inner ear are irreversibly damaged by noise.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by long-term subjection to extremely high levels of noise, which leads to a gradual decline of your hearing. Immediate damage can also occur if you are exposed to a burst of exceptionally damaging noise all at once.
More than 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 examples of noises that can result in hearing loss might include:
- Emergency Vehicles
- Nearby fireworks
- Busy Traffic
- Construction equipment
- Loud headphoness
- Jet engines
Is it Reversible?
Even though scientists are making advancements, presently, there isn’t a cure for noise induced hearing loss. Some of the damage in your ear could be due to inflammation so you need to see a doctor if you have been exposed to sudden loud noise. If you could reduce the inflammation you may be capable of reducing some lasting damage. The hair cells in your inner ear are in control of transmitting waves of sound to your brain. They never regenerate once they are ruined. So once they’re gone, irreversible hearing loss is the result. Safeguarding your ears, then, should be a priority, and seeing a specialist if you are currently having hearing problems.
Research to Address The Issue
This condition is presently incurable. But repairing noise-induced hearing loss is top priority for scientists. For example, some research is in clinical trials presently that are evaluating whether a drug can repair the growth of these little hairs in the ear. If scientists were able to get this drug to work, these hairs would be able to restore and we might be able to overcome noise and age related hearing loss.
What Hearing Remains Needs to be Protected
Noise induced hearing loss can’t be healed but if you take certain steps to safeguard your ears, the hearing you have left can be preserved into the future. Some steps you can take include:
- Manage any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- When you’re at home, limit your exposure to excessively loud pursuits
- Keep away from areas that constantly have loud noises
- Use the proper hearing protection devices, like earplugs or earmuffs if you work in locations with consistently loud noises
- Get regular hearing tests
Really, it’s best to eliminate exposure to loud noise by wearing hearing protection and lowering the volume on all your devices. But if you are exposed, schedule a hearing test.