Who Can Have Hearing Loss Problems

Hearing loss affects nearly 360 million people worldwide according to the World Health Organization, known as W.H.O. This invisible disability is no longer reserved for people over the age of 50. More and more of today’s younger generation are suffering from hearing loss often due to prolonged use of music listening devices like MP3 players at volumes that are harmful to one’s hearing ability. This tells you that anyone, young and old can suffer from hearing loss.

Are you at higher risk of hearing loss?

Hearing loss does not discriminate between ages or gender; however your profession or hobby may put you more at risk for developing hearing loss. If you are working in a career that involves constant exposure to loud noises such as machinery, construction, airplanes, or concert music, you are at a higher risk of suffering from hearing loss. A workplace that is noisy is required to provide the proper hearing protection for employees. Many hobbies also put your hearing in danger such as hunting, motorcycle riding, or playing music in a band. Common house work can also be dangerous to your ears especially if you are working with a lawnmower or leaf blow for example. It is always recommended that you wear the proper hearing protection so you ears and hearing stay safe! Hearing protection devices can usually be purchased from your local hearing care professional.

Here are some common noises and how loud they get in decibels. At 85 decibels at 8 hours of exposure your ears are in danger. At 115 decibels it only takes about 30 seconds of exposure to experience damage to your ears and hearing.

  • 85 db: Traffic, police whistle, alarms
  • 95 db: Lawn mower, hair dryer, noisy factory, truck with no muffler
  • 105 db: MP3 player typical volume, tractor
  • 115 db: Leaf blower, chainsaw, concerts, fireworks display

If you frequently find yourself in extremely noisy settings, you should have your hearing tested by a local hearing care provider. Once you have located an office near you that provides hearing screenings, you can schedule an appointment to discuss your hearing loss concerns with a hearing care professional. The following are some common symptoms of hearing loss that you may find helpful to be aware of.

Common Hearing Loss Symptoms may include:

  • Muffled or distorted hearing
  • Turning up the volume on the television or radio
  • Asking people to repeat what they say
  • Hearing in one ear better than the other
  • Difficulty hearing on the telephone
  • Feeling pressure or blockage in the ears
  • Lack of clarity when listening to speech
  • Difficulty hearing in the presence of background noises
  • Avoiding conversation and social interaction
  • Ringing, roaring, hissing, or buzzing in the ear which is known as tinnitus
  • Ear pain, itching, or irritation
  • Pus or fluid leaking from the ear
  • Vertigo

If you find any of these common symptoms to be familiar, you should seek professional attention and have your hearing tested. Upon having your hearing tested, a hearing professional will provide you with the best course of treatment given your needs.

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Last Updated: Dec 17, 2013