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How To Treat And Prevent Hearing Loss From Hazardous Noise On The Job

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that approximately 22 million American workers are exposed to loud noise levels at work. These noise levels are considered hazardous and can lead to hearing loss if a person is exposed on a long-term basis. If you work at a place that is overly noisy, you may want to take steps to protect your hearing. If you do not, you could end up with permanent hearing loss, which may cause you to need hearing aids.

How Are The Ears Affected By Loud Noise?

A person hears when sound waves enter into the person’s ears. These waves make vibrations, which are sent to the inner part of the ears. Inside your inner ear, you will find a part called the cochlea. This part contains hairs, and this is the part of the ear that actually makes you hear things.

When you are repeatedly exposed to loud sounds, it can damage the hairs on the cochlea. When this happens, you will begin suffering from hearing loss. It can be hard to know if sound is too loud, but a good sign is if you feel like you cannot hear well when you leave work. While your ears might slowly get back to normal as you drive home from work, you might slowly be experiencing hearing loss each time this happens.

Can You Prevent This?

If you are starting to suspect you have hearing loss, or if you simply want to protect your ears from this, you should wear hearing protectors while you are at work or around loud noises. Hearing protectors are generally earplugs that block out noise. Wearing earplugs will help you prevent losing any more hearing from exposure to loud noise.

You can also go to a hearing clinic to have your hearing tested. When this is done, you will be able to find out exactly how much hearing loss you have. In some cases, hearing loss is considered temporary and can be fixed. This type is called conductive hearing loss, and it is often caused by fluid in the ears, ear infections, or a buildup of wax.

The other type is called sensorineural hearing loss, and this type is permanent, and it is typically treated with hearing aids. If your job caused some of your hearing loss, you might be able to collect workers’ compensation for this, especially if your employer did not promote the necessary types of hearing protection.

If you would like to learn more about hearing loss and ways to prevent it, schedule an appointment to have your hearing loss tested by Cambridge Audiology or another local clinic.