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Woman protects her hearing with ear muffs while doing yardwork.

Safeguarding your hearing is similar to eating the right way. It’s difficult to know where to begin even though it sounds like a good idea. If there aren’t any noticeable noise risks and you don’t think your environment is particularly noisy, this is especially true. But your ears and senses can be stressed by daily living, so practicing these hearing protection techniques can help safeguard your auditory acuity.

If you want to continue to enjoy the sounds around you, you should do everything you can to slow down the impairment of your hearing.

Tip 1: Wearable Hearing Protection

The most basic and practical way that you can safeguard your ears is to protect your ears. This means that lessening loud and dangerous sound is a basic step you should take.

For many people, this will mean wearing ear protection when it’s required. Two basic forms of protection are available:

  • Ear Plugs, which are placed in the ear canal.
  • Ear Muffs, which are put over the ears.

Neither form of hearing protection is inherently better than the other. There are advantages to each style. Your choice of hearing protection should, most notably, feel comfortable.

Tip 2: Be Aware When Sound Becomes Harmful

But when to wear hearing protection is the question. We’re used to associating harmful noise with painful noise. But much lower levels of sound can damage your ears than you might believe. The sounds of traffic, as an example, are loud enough to start injuring your hearing after only a couple of hours. An essential step in protecting your hearing, then, is recognizing when sound becomes dangerous.

The following threshold is when sound becomes hazardous:

  • 95-100 dB: This is the normal volume of your earbuds or the level of farm equipment. This volume of sound becomes damaging after 15-20 minutes.
  • 85 decibels (dB): This volume of sound is hazardous after about two hours of exposure. Your hairdryer or a busy city street are both situations where you will find this volume of sound.
  • Over 100 dB: In this situation, you can injure your hearing very rapidly. Anything above this threshold can injure your hearing in minutes or seconds. Jet engines and rock concerts, for example, can injure your hearing in around thirty seconds.

Tip 3: Your Phone Can Become a Sound Meter

Now that we have a basic understanding of what volume of sound could be dangerous, we can take some steps to ensure we minimize our exposure. But in everyday life, it can be difficult trying to measure what is too loud and what isn’t.

That’s where your smartphone can become a handy little tool. There are dozens of apps for iPhone, Android, and everything in between that turn your device’s microphone into a sound meter.

In order to get an understanding of what hazardous levels of noise actually sound like, use your sound meter to confirm the decibel level of everything you are hearing.

Tip 4: Keep an Eye on Your Volume Settings

A smartphone with earbuds is normally the way people listen to music these days. Your hearing is put in danger with this setup. Over years of use, earbuds set to a substantially high volume can cause significant damage to your ears.

That’s why protecting your hearing means keeping a focused eye on your volume management. In order to drown out noises somewhere else, you should never increase the sound level. And we suggest using apps or settings to ensure that your volume never unintentionally become hazardously high.

If your hearing begins to decline, earbuds can become a negative feedback loop; in order to compensate for your faltering hearing, you may find yourself constantly increasing the volume of your earbuds, and in the process doing more damage to your hearing.

Tip 5: Get Your Hearing Tested

You might think that getting a hearing test is something you do only when your hearing starts to wane. The problem is that it’s not always easy to identify a problem in your hearing without a baseline to compare results to.

Generating data that can be used for both diagnostic purposes and for treatment can be best achieved by scheduling a hearing exam and screening. This will give you some extra context for future hearing decisions and ear protection.

Keep an Eye on Your Ears

It would be ideal if you could always safeguard your ears without any hassles. But challenges are always going to be there. So whenever you can and as often as possible, safeguard your ears. Also, get regular hearing exams. Use these suggestions to improve your chances.