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Prevention


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Hearing loss is the result of damage to the inner ear. At this point, this type of damage is irreversible, with the only treatments being hearing aids, assistive listening devices, implantable devices, and aural rehabilitation. Noise exposure is one of the most common causes of hearing loss, especially hearing losses that emerge earlier in life (before the age of 60). Noise-induced hearing loss can be prevented, in many cases, through baseline hearing screenings, the consistent and correct use of ear protection in noisy environments, limiting the volume on portable audio devices and routine hearing screenings.

Some indications that ear protection or prevention strategies may be warranted:

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  • Being consistently surrounded by noise in work and recreational settings and not consistently wearing ear protection in those environments.
  • Failure to wear ear protection while operating heavy machinery, shooting guns, attending concerts, attending indoor sporting events, playing in a band, or using power tools such as power saws and leaf blowers.
  • Personal audio devices and speakers have no sound limits set or established.
  • Ringing in the ears persists after leaving noisy environments.

The beauty of ear protection is that there are many low cost solutions available to protect your hearing! Ear protection can take many forms, from inexpensive foam plugs, to over the ear, earmuffs, to noise cancelling earphones to custom made products that are made to specifically for your needs and your ears. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!


If you believe you, a family member or friend are needs ear protection, here are some steps to consider:

  • Get your hearing routinely screened, at a physician’s or audiologist’s office, at a health fair, using the National Hearing Test, the IDA Institute Hearing Test or using an app like the Jacoti Hearing Center. If you fail the screening, have a comprehensive baseline hearing test with an audiologist. Hearing tests are covered by Medicare, if ordered by your physician, Medicare Advantage, Medicaid, and most private insurance plans.
  • Purchase ear protection and USE IT. Ear protection is available in many places such as drug stores, Amazon, hunting supply stores, and music stores. Custom ear protection can be purchased through licensed audiologists.
  • Educate yourself. Learn about the short and long effects of noise exposure on your hearing.

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