Noise is one of the biggest culprits in declining hearing. Although hearing loss can have many causes, noise — especially repetitive, loud sound — can certainly take its toll overtime. The increased sound pressure waves push through the ear system, wiping out the tiny hair cells in the inner ear.
Although this damage can occur with a onetime exposure to an intense sound, more commonly it is the result of repeated exposure over long periods of time. Noisy jobs such as construction, manufacturing, and emergency services or noisy hobbies such as hunting, music, and motorcycles can all play a part.
Avoiding damaging levels of sound and/or wearing hearing protection devices (HPD), such as earplugs or earmuffs, can help reduce or negate the impact of loud sound. But after the damage is done, it is not curable. Noise-induced hearing loss cannot be reversed.
However, you can protect your hearing from further damage. If you think you might have some noise-induced hearing loss, it is important to have your hearing tested to establish a baseline, and to start using hearing protection devices to protect what you have left. Your audiologist can help you determine what devices might be best for you.
Although noise-induced hearing loss is not curable, there are things you can do to overcome the residual hearing loss. Improving your communication skills or wearing small amplifying devices can help in many situations. The ear is complicated, and when damage is done, a thorough assessment is really the only way to decide which course of action is best.
Chesapeake Hearing Centers, Inc., is Maryland’s oldest private-practice audiology group. With more than 40 years of experience, we have helped thousands improve their lives through better hearing. Educated, credentialed, experienced, and with professional competence, we evaluate, treat, and serve exactly the way we would want to be treated…with courtesy and respect.