Hearing loss can start sooner than you think

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According to the World Health Organization, some 1.1 billion young people (aged 12 to 35) are at risk of permanent hearing loss from listening to music at high volumes for long periods of time.

Hearing loss has potentially devastating consequences for mental health, education and employment.

“More and more young people are putting themselves at risk of irreversible damage to their hearing with the daily use of personal audio devices,” says Deidre Breytenbach, Senior Audiologist at Noosa Hearing.

“Young adults need to be aware that once you lose your hearing, it won’t come back. Simple preventative actions such as lowering the volume, taking short listening breaks, and limiting daily use of personal audio devices to less than an hour can help reduce the risk,” says Deidre.

Safe listening depends on how loud or loud the sound is, as well as how long and how often you listen. Exposure to loud sounds can cause temporary hearing loss or tinnitus, which is a ringing sensation in the ear. When exposure is particularly strong, regular or prolonged, it can lead to permanent damage.

The focus of this World Hearing Day, March 3, 2022, is on the importance of “safe listening” as a way to maintain good hearing health throughout your life.

‘Safe Listening’ is not just for those who work in noisy environments. It also applies to the child in your care. Getting started early with preventative techniques can only lead to better overall hearing health, hence this year’s theme of the day: “To hear for life, listen carefully”.

This year’s theme will focus on the importance and ways to prevent hearing loss through safe listening, with the following key messages from WHO:

– It is possible to have good hearing throughout life thanks to ear and hearing care.

– Many common causes of hearing loss are preventable, including hearing loss caused by exposure to loud sounds.

– “Listen Safely” may reduce the risk of hearing loss associated with exposure to recreational sounds.

Deidre, an audiologist with more than 10 years of experience, says everyone, at any age, should get a hearing test regularly. Continuous monitoring means it is possible to react quickly to changes. An initial hearing assessment typically takes about an hour and is designed to be enjoyable and engaging for young children, teens, and adults. A full hearing assessment can be fully subsidized if you hold a DVA or pension card (conditions apply under the Australian Government Hearing Services Scheme). Noosa Hearing also offers over-the-counter or custom-made hearing protection such as earplugs for musicians.

Noosa Hearing operates within the long-established Noosa Optical. For a personal approach to optimal hearing health, call Deidre at Noosa Hearing on 5231 8867.

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