Noise-induced hearing loss is very common. If you are constantly exposed to noise that that is over 85 decibels, your hearing may be permanently impaired.
What is Noise-Related Hearing Loss?
This is a kind of sensorineural hearing loss where hair cells in your inner ear are irreversibly damaged by noise.
Noise-related hearing loss can be brought on by long-term subjection to extremely high levels of noise, which causes a gradual deterioration of your hearing. Instant damage can also occur if you are subjected to a burst of exceptionally damaging noise all at once.
Recreational and work activities account for 17% of hearing loss in individuals between 20 and 69. Here are some examples of noises that can lead to hearing loss:
- Nearby fireworks
- Jet engines
- Loud volume on earphones
- Busy Traffic
- Construction equipment
Can it be Reversed?
Even though scientists are making advancements, currently, there isn’t a cure for noise related hearing loss. If you have been exposed to a loud noise, you should consult a doctor as soon as possible, because some of the prolonged damage is due to swelling in the ear. You may be able to limit the damage that occurs by reducing inflammation. The hair cells inside of your inner ear are in control of sending waves of sound to your brain. If noise harms or kills them, they won’t regenerate. So once they are gone, irreversible hearing loss is the consequence. This is why it is important that you take the necessary steps to protect your hearing, and if you’re exposed to a loud noise, that you speak with a specialist as soon as possible.
Approaching The Problem With Research
This condition is currently not curable. However, researchers are looking for ways to restore noise-induced hearing loss. There are clinical trials, for example, that are attempting to restore these hairs with a trial drug. Age-related hearing loss and loud noise can harm these hairs, but regrowth would help restore hearing if researchers are able to get the drug to work.
Safeguard Your Remaining Hearing
While hearing loss that is caused by noise can’t be repaired (yet), you are capable of taking specific steps to avoid hearing loss or protect the remaining hearing that you have. You can:
- If there are areas that regularly have loud noise – stay away from them
- Treat any hearing loss you have with hearing aids
- Get tested regularly
- When you’re at home, limit your exposure to excessively loud activities
- If you work in an industry that has consistently loud noise, use the appropriate hearing protection
Actually, it’s best to avoid exposure to loud noise by wearing hearing protection and keeping the volume down on all your devices. But if you are exposed, make an appointment for a hearing test.