Hearing Services of Nashville

Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

The average summer day is likely filled with fun activities and happenings, from motorcycle rides to family reunions to fireworks to sporting events. Most of these activities are perfectly safe and healthy, but there are some that do come with a risk of noise-related hearing loss. That’s because loud noises, over time, can harm your ability to hear. A loud motorcycle engine or the roar of a crowd could be causing long-term, noise-induced hearing loss.

Over time, really loud noises can cause damage to your ears. As a consequence, you experience hearing loss. Noise-related hearing loss is effectively irreversible.

Even though this kind of hearing loss can’t be cured, it can be effectively treated. Over the long run, you can protect your hearing and prevent damage by being aware of prevalent sources of loud noise and developing prevention strategies. With a few basic adjustments, you can enjoy your summer fun and protect your hearing health.

Is it really that loud during the summer?

It can be very easy to overlook noise hazards during the summer months. Here are a few of the most prevalent and also most hazardous:

  • Routine lawn care: This category includes chainsaws, weed wackers, leaf blowers, and lawnmowers. These tools have very loud powerful motors. Motors that run on electricity rather than gas are usually quite a bit quieter, though.
  • Fireworks events: Summer has lots of fireworks. From neighborhood parties to holiday celebrations to sporting events, fireworks displays are everywhere during the summer months. Regrettably, fireworks are extremely loud and can certainly cause damage to your ears.
  • Loud concerts: Even outdoor concerts have considerable risks to your hearing health. These events are, after all, meant to be really loud.
  • Sporting events: Crowd noise can damage your hearing, especially at events like auto racing or monster truck rallies.
  • Routine use of power tools: Summer is a perfect time for home improvement projects. But it’s crucial to remember that all of those power tools can be quite noisy. The more you use these tools, the more your hearing risk increases.
  • Driving: If you’re driving with the windows down, the wind noise can reach hazardous volumes in your ears and this is even more significant if you drive a convertible. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you’re exposed.

In general, sounds louder than 85dB are considered to be harmful. The average hair dryer, blender, or lawnmower is about this volume. That’s significant to note because these sounds may not seem particularly noisy. But the volume of these devices can cause hearing damage over time.

Preventing noise-related hearing damage

Noise-related hearing loss effects millions of people every year. Noise-related hearing loss can occur at any age, unlike age-related hearing loss. That’s why prevention is so significant. Here are a few of the most helpful prevention strategies:

  • Wear hearing protection: Keep a set of ear plugs or ear muffs on hand in case you can’t or aren’t willing to avoid certain loud situations. Use this hearing protection whenever you need to, when you are in situations that are noisy. This can help you avoid damage. Custom hearing protection devices personalized to your ears and your hearing can be especially effective.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): Spend a quieter next day after going to a fireworks display. Additional and more significant damage can be avoided by giving your ears an opportunity to rest and recover.
  • Limit your time in noisy environments: The louder the environment, the more you should regulate your time. This can help avoid long-term damage to your ears. If you’re at a loud sporting event, for example, walk to a quieter area every thirty minutes or so.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Using disposable earplugs might not be as reliable as customized earplugs but, in a pinch, they’re better than no protection at all. An inexpensive pair of disposable earplugs can help prevent significant damage if you find yourself in a loud setting all of a sudden.
  • Get your hearing checked: Hearing loss typically doesn’t happen all of a sudden. It could take years to notice in many cases. Frequently, the only way to find out whether you have any noise-related hearing loss is to have your hearing examined. We’ll be able to discuss how to avoid further damage, which treatment solutions may be appropriate, and how to keep your hearing as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: 85 dB might not seem like a lot, but you would probably be surprised how fast sounds can escalate above that minimum threshold. Even your earbuds and headphones can begin to do damage at these volume levels. You can become more conscious of when volume levels start to get too loud by downloading a volume monitoring app for your cellphone.
  • Turn down the volume at home: Your ears can get a break by simply lowering the volume on your devices. When everything is loud all the time, damage can progress much faster.

Noise-related hearing loss isn’t inevitable. Prevention strategies can help maintain your hearing. With the right strategy, you can enjoy all that summer, or any other season, has to offer and protect your hearing.

Talking to us can help begin your journey towards healthier ears and better hearing. Call today for an appointment!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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