Noise-induced hearing loss is very common. If you are always exposed to noise that is over 85 decibels, your hearing might be irreversibly damaged.
Exactly How Does Noise-Related Hearing Loss Work?
This is a kind of sensorineural hearing loss where hair cells in your inner ear are permanently damaged by noise.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be brought on by long-term exposure to very high levels of noise, which leads to a gradual deterioration of your hearing. Instant damage can also happen if you are exposed to a burst of exceptionally damaging noise all at once.
Work and recreational activities are responsible for 17% of hearing loss in individuals between 20 and 69. Some examples of noises that can cause hearing loss might include:
- Jet engines
- Nearby fireworks
- Loud volume on earphones
- Busy Traffic
Is it Reversible?
Although scientists are making advancements, currently, there is no cure for noise related hearing loss. If you have been exposed to a loud noise, you need to consult a doctor as soon as possible, because some of the prolonged damage is due to swelling in the ear. If you could reduce the swelling you may be capable of reducing some permanent damage. The hair cells in your inner ear are responsible for transmitting waves of sound to your brain. They never regenerate once they are destroyed. Meaning that your hearing ability will be permanently affected. Protecting your ears, then, should be top priority, and seeing a specialist if you are currently having hearing problems.
Approaching The Issue With Research
There is currently no solution for this condition. However, researchers are looking for ways to restore noise-related hearing loss. There are clinical trials, for example, that are attempting to restore these hairs with a trial drug. If scientists were capable of getting this drug to work, these hairs would be able to regenerate and we might be able to address noise and age related hearing loss.
Safeguard Your Remaining Hearing
While hearing loss that is a result of noise cannot be restored (yet), you are capable of taking specific steps to reduce hearing loss or protect the remaining hearing that you have. Some things you can do include:
- If you work in an occupation that has persistently loud noise, use the recommended hearing protection
- Limit your exposure to extremely noisy activities at home
- Stay away from places that constantly have loud noises
- Treat any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- Get tested routinely
Actually, it’s best to eliminate exposure to loud noise by wearing hearing protection and keeping the volume down on all your devices. Make an appointment for a hearing exam if you have been exposed to loud noise.