Noise-induced hearing loss is exceptionally common. Your hearing can be permanently damaged if you spend a lot of time exposed to noise that exceeds 85 dB.
Exactly How Does Noise-Related Hearing Loss Work?
There are tiny hair cells in your inner ear which can be permanently damaged by loud noise. This is called sensorineural hearing loss.
Noise-induced hearing loss can be brought on by long-term exposure to very high levels of noise, which causes a gradual deterioration of your hearing. Immediate damage can also happen if you are subjected to a burst of exceptionally damaging noise all of a sudden.
Over 17 percent of people 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 cause hearing loss might include:
- Emergency Vehicles
- Jet engines
- Loud headphoness
- Nearby fireworks
- Construction equipment
- Busy Traffic
Can it be Reversed?
Although scientists are making advancements, currently, there is no cure for noise induced hearing loss. Some of the damage in your ear might be the result of inflammation so you should see a doctor if you have been subjected to sudden loud noise. You may be capable of limiting the damage that develops by decreasing inflammation. The hair cells in your inner ear are responsible for transmitting sound waves to your brain. If noise damages or kills them, they are unable to regenerate. Meaning that your hearing ability will be permanently affected. Safeguarding your ears, then, should be top priority, and consulting a specialist if you are currently having hearing problems.
Addressing The Problem With Research
There is currently no solution for this condition. However, researchers are searching for ways to restore noise-induced hearing loss. For example, some research is in clinical trials right now that are testing whether a drug can repair the growth of the tiny hairs in the ear. Age-induced hearing loss and loud noise can damage these hairs, but regrowth would help repair hearing if scientists are able to get the drug to work.
What Hearing Remains Needs to be Protected
While hearing loss that is a result of noise can’t be repaired (yet), you are capable of taking certain steps to reduce hearing loss or save the remaining hearing that you have. You can:
- Stay away from areas that continuously have loud noises
- Manage any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- Get tested routinely
- If you work in an industry that has persistently loud noise, use the correct hearing protection
- Reduce your exposure to exceedingly noisy activities at home
Actually, it’s best to eliminate exposure to loud noise by using hearing protection and keeping the volume down on all your devices. Make an appointment for a hearing test if you have been exposed to loud noise.