How to prevent hearing loss

Hearing Awareness Week: hearing loss affects 3.5 million Australians - know your facts.

Hearing Awareness Week is an opportunity to raise community awareness of hearing impairment and ways you can protect your hearing to prevent future problems.

Supported by the Australian Government Department of Health and the Deafness Forum of Australia, the event is also an opportunity for the 22% of Australians aged 15 years and over who have a hearing impairment to share their experiences and knowledge and help to create a greater understanding of their needs and aspirations.

Hearing loss can be caused by:

  • Hereditary conditions
  • Infectious diseases
  • Prolonged exposure to excessive noise
  • The effects of aging

If you are concerned about your hearing, it’s a good idea to take steps to tackle the problem early on. People who are fitted with hearing aids early are likely to get more benefit from them than those who put up with hearing loss for years before seeking help.

It can take up to 15 years for people who clearly have hearing loss to get tested – a key reason for those long years in denial is the stigma of hearing loss.

During Hearing Awareness Week, there are opportunities to check your hearing for free and to find out more information ways to protect your hearing to prevent further damage.

Loud noise and hearing loss

Hearing Awareness Week says one of the key ways to protect your hearing is to manage the amount of loud noise you are exposed to on a regular basis.

“Most cases of deafness are caused by damage to the tiny hair cells in the inner ear. This damage can be the result of too much noise, and it’s permanent. Noise-related hearing loss is usually irreversible.

“It is important that we all take steps to prevent noise-related damage. The key to keeping your hearing intact is to avoid loud noise.”

Safe listening tips

As a general rule, the louder the sound, the less time you can safely listen to it. Of course, that’s not to say we can’t enjoy listening to music on our iPods and seeing live bands – it just means we need to be sensible about it and take steps to reduce the chances of damage being caused.

Hearing Awareness Week provides the following tips for safer listening:

  • Use the 60:60 rule. Listen to your music at 60% of the MP3 player’s maximum volume for no more than 60 minutes a day.
  • Turn down the dial. Turn down the volume on your TV, radio or hi-fi a notch.
  • Use earplugs when you’re listening to live music. They can reduce average sound levels by between 15 and 35 decibels.
  • Don’t put up with work noise. Talk to your human resources department.
  • Wear ear protectors
  • Be careful in the car. Listening to music in a confined space increases the risk of hearing damage.
  • Don’t listen to music too loud for too long.
  • Give your ears time to recover after they’ve been exposed to loud noise.

More information at hearingawarenessweek.org.au

 

Recommended reading - A-Z guide

Guides

E is for eye health

Regular eye tests are an important way of maintaining vision and identifying eye problems early.

Read more
Guides

I is for influenza

Influenza is a highly contagious virus that produces the classic ‘flu’ symptoms.

Read more
Guides

T is for travel advice

With almost 8 million overseas departures last year, Australians are extremely active travellers.

Read more
Guides

V is for veggie patch

Where would your winter heart be without the veggie patch?

Read more
Guides

Y is for yoga

Originating in India over 5000 years ago, yoga is now commonplace in western society.

Read more
Guides

A is for antioxidants

Kate Gudorf explains the best sources of dietary antioxidants and how they can impact your health.

Read more
Guides

B is for breath

Apart from keeping us alive, breathing is central to many practices of meditation and mindfulness.

Read more
Guides

C is for cycling

Cycling is a great way to experience the fresh air, wildlife, food and landscapes of New Zealand.

Read more
Guides

D is for vitamin D

Vitamin D is essential for bone and muscle development and in the prevention of osteoporosis.

Read more
Guides

F is for football

The benefits of physical activity and social interaction through sport are well documented.

Read more
Guides

G is for geothermal mud

Are there health benefits to be found in certain types of mud?

Read more
Guides

H is for herbal remedies

Herbal remedies are fast becoming a popular complement to mainstream healthcare.

Read more
Guides

J is for jump for bone health

We explain how good old fashioned jumping is good for your bone health.

Read more
Guides

K is for K.I.S.S

Know the important signs and symptoms to detect ovarian cancer.

Read more
Guides

L is for lemons & limes

Lemons are found in most backyards and are staples of old fashioned puddings and gin and tonics.

Read more
Guides

M is for microbes

Microbes are tiny single-cell organisms numbering 100 trillion and counting.

Read more
Guides

N is for nutrition

Nutrition and its link to learning is the focus of a recent research report by The Smith Family.

Read more
Guides

O is for obesity

If weight gain continues at current levels by 2025 80% of Australians will be overweight or obese.

Read more
Guides

P is for Pinot Noir

In moderation, red wine may decrease heart disease, prevent cancer and strengthen the immune system.

Read more
Guides

Q is for quinoa

This ancient seed is certainly the flavour of the month in the culinary world.

Read more
Guides

R is for red meat

Red meat may be an excellent source of vitamins and minerals but it must be consumed in moderation.

Read more
Guides

U is for undergarments

The winter chills affect many of us during our coldest season.

Read more
Guides

W is for working

Working with the community is a way of giving back and enriching the fabric of society.

Read more
Lifestyle

S is for salt

An average Australian eats about a teaspoon more salt than recommended for a healthy diet.

Read more
Guides

X is for extra exercise

Extra exercise will reduce your health risks, lift your mood and keep you going strong into old age.

Read more
Guides

Z is for zingiber

Fresh ginger rhizome is used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat colds flu and digestive upsets

Read more

For full functionality of this site it is necessary to enable JavaScript. Here are instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your web browser.