Turn down the music, tune up the ear protection

Hearing loss prevention doesn’t begin in your fifties. Understanding the risk factors for noise-related hearing loss at a younger age, and knowing the early warning signs for hearing damage can help you enjoy your favourite music and the world around you well into your golden years.

“Hearing loss is often considered an ‘old person problem,’ but that just isn’t the case. Most individuals 50 or older who are experiencing noise-related hearing loss could have taken preventive measures earlier in life to reduce their risk of hearing loss later on,” says Kim Galick, with Ears Hearing Clinic in Langley.

Kim suggests taking noise-related hearing loss seriously sooner, and encouraging kids and teens to do the same.

“While not all hearing loss is noise-related, all noise-related hearing loss is preventable,” Kim explains. “Understanding which noises and volumes cause damage, wearing hearing protection during loud activities, not listening to music at excessive volumes, and moving away from loud noises when you can’t protect yourself from it can all reduce your risk of experiencing noise-related hearing loss later on in life.”

Early warning signs of hearing loss:

  • Ringing in the ears
  • Speech and other sounds seem muffled
  • Inability to hear high-pitched sounds like doorbells, birds or alarm clocks
  • Needing others to speak slowly and clearly or to repeat themselves
  • Constantly needing to turn up the volume on the television or radio

“If you’re experiencing any symptoms of hearing loss or feel your hearing has changed, it’s important to see a hearing practitioner as soon as possible,” Kim says. “Early intervention can prevent further damage and reduce your risk for secondary health-related concerns as a result of hearing loss, such as depression and anxiety.”

While knowing the early warning signs is important, the best thing you can do for your hearing is to prevent noise-related hearing loss before it occurs.

Preventing noise-related hearing loss:

  • Use proper hearing protection at all times when exposed to loud environments
  • Keep music, movies, and video games at no more than 60 per cent of maximum volume (lower is better!)
  • Limit ear bud and head phone use to 60 minutes at a time

Hearing aids are the first step to renewing your ability to hear clearly again. Book your free hearing consultation with Kim Galick at Ears Hearing Clinic in Langley at 604-427-2828 or by email at info@earslangley.com. Find Ears Hearing at Unit C 20568 56 Ave. in Langley, online at earslangley.com or follow them on Facebook.

READ MORE from Ears Hearing Clinic:

Getting the most from your hearing aids today … and tomorrow

From our independence to friendships, addressing hearing loss adds immeasurable value to life

Tinnitus and hearing loss: tips for finding relief from ringing ears

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