Noise-related hearing loss is very common. If you are constantly around noise that exceeds 85 decibels, your hearing might be permanently impaired.
What is Noise-Induced Hearing Loss?
This is a kind of sensorineural hearing loss where hair cells inside of your inner ear are permanently damaged by noise.
A gradual deterioration of hearing, eventually bringing about permanent hearing loss, occurs when you are subjected to very loud noise over a long period of time. Immediate damage can also happen if you are exposed to a burst of extremely damaging noise all at once.
Work and recreational activities account for 17% of hearing loss in individuals between 20 and 69. Some examples of noises that can result in hearing loss might include:
- Emergency Vehicles
- Loud headphoness
- Busy Traffic
- Jet engines
- Nearby fireworks
Is it Reversible?
There is currently no cure for noise-related hearing loss (although scientists are working on it). Some of the damage inside your ear might be due to inflammation so you need to talk to a doctor if you have been subjected to sudden loud noise. You may be able to limit the damage that develops by reducing swelling. The hair cells inside of your inner ear are responsible for sending waves of sound to your brain. If noise damages or kills them, they won’t regenerate. This means that your hearing ability will be permanently impacted. Protecting your ears, then, should be top priority, and seeing a specialist if you’re currently having hearing trouble.
Research to Manage The Issue
This condition is presently incurable. However, researchers are looking for ways to repair noise-induced hearing loss. For example, some research is in clinical trials presently that are testing whether a drug can restore the growth of these tiny hairs in the ear. If scientists were able to get this drug to work, these hairs would be able to restore and we may be able to address noise and age related hearing loss.
Protect Your Remaining Hearing
Noise induced hearing loss can’t be cured but if you take specific steps to protect your ears, the hearing you have left can be protected into the future. You can:
- Manage any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- Minimize your exposure to exceedingly noisy activities at home
- Get tested regularly
- If you work in an industry that has persistently loud noise, use the correct hearing protection
- Stay away from places that constantly have loud noises
Actually, it’s best to avoid exposure to loud noise by using hearing protection and lowering the volume on all your devices. But if you are exposed, schedule a hearing test.