Education about hearing loss is key to prevention.  If you are not aware of certain everyday habits that may cause hearing loss, you cannot keep yourself out of harm’s way.
The first step to treating hearing loss is preventing it when you can. Here are 3 habits that can cause hearing loss that you should be aware of:

  1. If you can watch your sugar intake and keep your blood pressure at a healthy level, you have a better chance of avoiding hearing loss due to these diseases.  If you currently suffer from either of these two diseases, you should be sure to have regular hearing check-ups – to make sure your ears are and remain healthy.
  2. Avoid sticking anything in your ears to clean them. When you clean your ears you should avoid placing a q-tip in your ear canal as it can actually push earwax further into the ear causing temporary hearing loss. If you push too hard, you also run the risk of rupturing your eardrum which can lead to permanent hearing loss. To clean the outer part of your ears, you can use a q-tip, however to clean the inside of the ear you should either use a warm water flush or see a doctor or audiologist who can perform the ear cleaning for you.
  3. Put out that cigarette! Smoking is not just bad for your lungs and mouth, it can affect your hearing as well. Smoking can lead to a higher risk of ear infections and if left untreated, can cause permanent hearing loss. The chemicals and other toxins in a cigarette can also have a harmful effect on your inner ears. Studies have shown that the inner hair cell function within the cochlea may be diminished by long term nicotine use. Nicotine can also damage the auditory nerve which is responsible for sending sounds to the brain. Once the nerve is damaged, there is currently no treatment.

Understanding what everyday activities put your hearing at risk is very important. Once you are aware, you can keep an eye out for any signs of hearing loss or can stop the habit all together. If you have any questions about hearing loss, please contact us to speak with one of the hearing professionals at Krista Szalc, Audiology, PLLC. We are happy to answer any of your questions!