Man with weedwacker wearing hearing protection cutting the grass

From sporting events to family gatherings to fireworks shows to motorcycle rides, summer is filled with fun activities. And while the majority of these activities are safe, many can present invisible risks to your hearing health. 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.

What is noise-induced hearing loss? This condition occurs when excessively loud noises, over time, trigger damage to your hearing. The result of this exposure is loss of hearing. Noise-induced hearing loss is effectively permanent.

There is no cure, though this form of hearing loss can be effectively controlled. Over the long run, you can protect your hearing and prevent damage by being aware of common sources of loud noise and developing prevention strategies. With a few simple adjustments, you can enjoy your summer fun and safeguard your hearing health.

Is it actually that loud during the summer?

It can be quite easy to miss noise hazards during the summer months. Here are a few of the most prevalent and also most harmful:

  • Routine lawn care: Included in this category are chainsaws, weed wackers, leaf blowers, and lawnmowers. These tools have very loud powerful motors. Motors that run on electricity instead of gas are typically much quieter, though.
  • Routine use of power tools: Home improvement projects are great activities during the summer. But it’s significant to keep in mind that all of those power tools can be really noisy. The more you use these tools, the more your hearing hazard increases.
  • Loud concerts: Even outside concerts have considerable hazards to your hearing health. After all, these events are planned to be as loud as possible.
  • Driving: If you’re driving with the windows down, the wind noise can reach hazardous volumes in your ears and this is even more relevant if you drive a convertible. And the risk becomes dramatically worse the longer you’re exposed.
  • Sporting events: Crowd noise can damage your hearing, especially at events like auto racing or monster truck rallies.
  • Fireworks events: Many towns have fireworks displays monthly or more during the summer. From neighborhood gatherings to holiday festivities to sporting events, fireworks shows are everywhere during the summer months. But fireworks shows are definitely loud enough to cause permanent hearing damage.

In general, sounds above 85dB are considered to be harmful. This is about the range of a lawnmower, hair dryer, or a typical blender. These sounds might not seem especially loud so this is significant to note. 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 each year. And, unlike age-related hearing loss, noise-related hearing loss can happen at any age. That’s why prevention is so significant. Here are some of the most helpful prevention strategies:

  • Turn down the volume at home: Your ears can get a rest by simply reducing the volume on your devices. Damage will develop faster if you’re always listening to your devices at a high volume.
  • Give your ears a break (and time to recover): Spend a quieter next day after attending a fireworks display. This can give your ears more time to recuperate and avoid further and more substantial damage.
  • Limit your time in noisy environments: The more noisy the environment, the more you should regulate your time. This can help protect against long-term damage to your ears. Every thirty minutes or so, when you’re at a noisy sporting event, for instance, go and spend some time in a less noisy area.
  • Download a sound level detection app to your phone: You might be surprised at just how rapidly sounds can escalate above that 85dB danger zone volume. At these volume levels, even your headphones or earbuds can quickly start harming your hearing. There are many dependable apps available for smartphones that can help you monitor ambient noise levels, so you can be more mindful of when your surroundings become harmful to your hearing.
  • Get your hearing checked: Hearing loss normally doesn’t develop all of a sudden. Many individuals won’t detect the symptoms for months or years. Frequently, the only way to find out whether you have any noise-related hearing loss is to have your hearing examined. We will help you understand how to keep your hearing healthy for years to come and talk about treatment solutions for any hearing loss you might already have.
  • Wear hearing protection: If you cannot avoid loud environments (or don’t want to miss out on certain fun activities), you can get a pair of good ear muffs or ear plugs. When you are in settings that are too noisy, use this protection to your advantage. This can help you avoid damage. Custom hearing protection devices tailored to your ears and your hearing can be particularly effective.
  • Use disposable earplugs when you have to: Making use of disposable earplugs might not be as reliable as customized earplugs but, in a pinch, they’re better than no protection at all. An inexpensive set of disposable earplugs can help prevent considerable damage if you find yourself in a noisy environment all of a sudden.

You don’t need to resign yourself to getting noise-related hearing loss. Prevention strategies can help preserve your hearing. You can protect your hearing and enjoy fun activities in any season with the proper approach.

Talking to us can help start 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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