It’s very common for people to have loss of hearing caused by continued subjection to loud noise. If you are always around noise that that is over 85 decibels, your hearing could be irreversibly impaired.
Exactly How Does Noise-Related Hearing Loss Work?
There are tiny hair cells inside your inner ear which can be permanently damaged by loud noise. This is called sensorineural hearing loss.
A gradual deterioration of hearing, eventually leading to permanent hearing loss, develops when you are exposed to very loud noise over a long period of time. Instant damage can also happen if you are subjected to a burst of exceptionally damaging noise all at once.
Over 17 percent of people between 20 to 69 have hearing loss that is caused by their work or recreational activities. Here are some examples of noises that can result in hearing loss:
- Loud headphoness
- Nearby fireworks
- Busy Traffic
- Jet engines
Is it Reversible?
There is presently no remedy for noise-induced hearing loss (though scientists are hard at work on it). Some of the damage inside your ear could be the result of inflammation so you need to see a doctor if you’ve been exposed to sudden loud noise. If you could decrease the swelling you may be able to reduce some permanent damage. Waves of sound are transmitted to the brain by the little hair cells in the ear. They never regenerate once they are destroyed. So once they are gone, irreversible hearing loss is the result. This is the reason why it is crucial that you take the necessary steps to protect your hearing, and if you’re exposed to a loud noise, that you speak with a specialist right away.
Research to Address The Issue
This condition is currently incurable. However, researchers are looking for ways to repair noise-related hearing loss. For instance, some studies are in clinical trials presently that are evaluating whether a drug can restore the growth of the little hairs in the ear. If scientists were able to get this drug to work, these hairs would be able to regenerate and we may be able to overcome noise and age related hearing loss.
Safeguard 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. Some things you can do include:
- Manage any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- When you’re at home, limit your exposure to overly loud activities
- If there are areas that regularly have loud noise – avoid them
- If you work in an occupation that has consistently loud noise, use the appropriate hearing protection
- Get regular hearing tests
Actually, it’s best to avoid exposure to loud noise by using hearing protection and keeping the volume down on all your devices. Schedule a hearing test if you have been exposed to loud noise.