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Supporting Ear Health

When your ability to hear gets damaged, it’s most likely permanent. There can be issues that lead to temporary compromised healing that go away with time, and an audiologist in Pottstown can provide hearing aids. However, when the hearing is truly damaged, it’s for good. This means that everyone should know some fundamentals about audiology in Pottstown and how they can take care of their ears and overall auditory health.


Ways To Start


To start, roughly 15% of Americans lose hearing from noise due to either loud workplaces or leisure settings. This can range from a nightclub to a lawnmower to many other noises. If you know that you’re going to be around these settings often, it’s a good idea to invest in a set of earplugs. These aren’t very expensive, and it’s possible to get a custom fit for your ears from your local healthcare providers. There are also specialized options for musicians. These use filters to make it possible to converse and hear music while reducing harmful levels of sound.


Another thing that may surprise you is the level of risk involved with the unsafe use of audio devices. Over a billion teenagers/young adults worldwide are at risk of some sort of loss. A good rule to follow if you use earbuds or headphones is the 60/60 rule. This basically means that whenever you use audio devices, you want to keep them below 60% volume for less than 60 minutes a day. Over-the-ear headphones are preferred because they don’t sit right next to the eardrum.


Let’s say that you’re in a situation where you find yourself exposed to different loud noises for an extended period, like during an outing. If you can’t avoid it, you need to at least incorporate rest time for your ears. If possible, step away from the noise for five minutes or so. Interestingly, a single night around loud noises can cause your ears to need as much as 16 hours to recover.


We should also talk about cotton swabs and the role of clearing wax. Most people assume that their goal should be to use swabs to get rid of as much wax as possible. However, wax has an important use. The ear cleans itself, and the wax helps keep particles like dust from getting into the ear canal. There’s also the risk of hurting your eardrum when you insert the swab in. If you feel like you have too much wax, cleaning around, but not in the canal using a gentle wet towel is preferable. There are also removal solutions you can buy that let the wax come out on its own.


Another thing you want to do is talk to your doctor about any medications you are taking. Temporary loss of hearing or impacted hearing can be a side effect of some medications. Make sure you learn this early on so you know how to react and can keep your doctor in the loop if things get worse.


Hearing Tests In Pottstown And More


There are other ways to avoid needing to go to a hearing clinic in Pottstown before your time. While we mentioned the need to use proper protection to avoid damage from loud noises, it’s equally important to try and avoid these scenarios whenever you can. If a noise hurts your ears or leads to ringing/muffled hearing afterward, chances are that it’s loud enough to cause damage over time. Any sound over 85 decibels has the potential to be harmful. There are even smartphone apps that can help do this.


If you’re more concerned about issues in the workplace, the first thing you may want to do is reach out to your manager or HR. Labor regulations require them to take chances that will minimize your potential exposure to loud noise. These include swapping to quieter equipment when you can, providing some sort of hearing protection, and minimizing your exposure.


There are some health areas that play an important role in supporting ear health that don’t get talked about often. The need for good exercise is a good example. It can provide health benefits in a lot of ways, but chances are that ear health wasn’t what most people think of. How is this the case? Any sort of cardio workout, like running or cycling, helps pump blood to various parts of the body, the ears included. In turn, these help the internal components of the ear stay healthy and functional. However, in certain physical activities, you always want to stay safe. For example, if you plan on going cycling, be sure to wear a helmet. If you fall and get a concussion, this could impact your hearing.


Something else that doesn’t get discussed as often as it should is the role of stress and anxiety. Both of these can be linked to temporary and permanent tinnitus. Part of this is due to high stress levels and our natural fight or flight response. In times of stress, the body fills with adrenaline because it thinks it’s in danger. This adds pressure to a variety of bodily systems, from blood flow to the nervous system. Many experts theorize that the inner ear is also an example of this, hence the possible tinnitus symptoms.


Lastly, getting testing is as important as possible if you have even the slightest concern about your ability to hear. The sooner any potential loss is discovered, the faster that you can act on it. In addition, it’s not a bad idea to make sure that you get annual healing checks or some form of a regular check if you’re in a situation with a higher risk of loss. This can apply to musicians or people who work in environments with a lot of noise. It’s also important that you go in for emergency testing if there is sudden drainage, bleeding, or pain. Professionals can even help with removing excess ear wax.