The idea of slowly losing our senses is never a fun thought to entertain, but that doesn’t stop us from wondering about the consequences that we might face should we neglect such issues. For instance, have you ever wondered what it might be like to drive with poor vision and refuse to use glasses? There’s a very high chance that you’re going to end up in an accident, so we won’t even play with that possibility–we’ll get glasses and we’ll wear them without complaining because we value our safety.
But that’s the case with our vision, a sense that we rely on quite a lot to interact with the world around us. If our sight is degrading, then it’s usually quite obvious and we can get around it with prescription glasses, contact lenses, and other similar methods. So what about our hearing?
Hearing is another story. It degrades much more slowly than our other senses, and it’s something that can quickly get worse due to the lifestyles that we live today. Loud music, busy streets, and packed concerns can all lead to gradual hearing loss if you aren’t careful. But how worried should you be about this possibility? Is hearing loss something that you should be looking out for, or is it actually somewhat easy to deal with?
Hearing loss can happen as you get older
One of the most common causes of hearing loss is actually your age. As you grow older, your hearing will naturally decline as your inner ear and auditory nerves begin to change. This can make it harder for you to hear things at certain frequencies, and the perceived volume of sounds can be a lot lower than what you’re used to.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do in response to this except for protecting your ears to ensure that loud sounds don’t accelerate your hearing loss and make it worse.
Hearing loss can happen at seemingly low sound levels
It’s said that any noise above 70 dB can cause hearing loss if left for long enough. 70 dB is around the volume that a dishwasher or a washing machine makes, but you’ll need to be standing right next to the appliance for several hours before you experience any kind of hearing loss.
However, as the sound level increases, the chances of you developing permanent hearing loss increase. For instance, any lawnmower or leaf blower that exceeds 85 dB can cause permanent damage to your hearing in just under 2 hours. Granted, nobody really uses those appliances for that long, so you’re generally quite safe. However, if you do need to use something loud for an extended period of time, then we suggest you wear some kind of hearing protection.
Hearing loss is preventable
If there’s ever any doubt about your hearing then remember that hearing loss is completely preventable. While age-related hearing loss might affect you now and then, you can protect your ears by avoiding loud sounds and being as diligent as possible.