Everybody wants to stay youthful for as long as they can. From wrinkle creams to Botox to special diets to spin class, we spend a great number of hours each day doing what we can to slow down the aging process. Still, with all that time and effort, the one thing that could actually work, we often avoid: using ear protection.
Hearing loss is often one of those “signs of aging” that we tend to think of as inevitable. But it’s not as simple as that. You can keep your hearing in great condition and help prevent damage by protecting and taking care of your ears. And good hearing can have considerable anti-aging effects as time goes by.
Hearing And Aging
The actual passage of time is not normally what we are describing when we talk about aging. Rather, “aging” usually refers to the presentation of certain emotional, mental, or physical characteristics that we associate with getting older. A perfect example of this is pain in your joints. When your knees start to bother you, you might associate that with “getting old”. But it’s not age by itself that leads to the issue (your daily 5-mile run could have something to do with it, too).
Many kinds of hearing loss fall into this category. As you get older, damage accumulates. And in most situations, it’s the accumulation of damage that causes the actual hearing degeneration. And it’s typically downhill from there. Neglected hearing loss has been associated with a number of other signs of aging:
- When hearing impairments are undetected and neglected they can often hasten the onset of other mental health problems, including dementia.
- Self isolation from family and friends can be the result of neglected hearing loss.
- Research has shown a robust connection between neglected hearing loss, anxiety, and depression.
- In some cases, the mental demand associated with trying to hear can lead to issues like memory loss or insomnia. And, in an especially profound way, that can cause you to feel like you are getting old.
What to do About Age Related Hearing Loss
You’re actually emphasizing damage prevention when you fight the “signs of aging” in your ears. And fortunately, there are a number of ways to achieve that. Here are a few things you can do:
- Become more aware. You can still have harm to your hearing even if sounds are not painfully loud. Moderate noise for longer durations can cause damage to your ears, too.
- If you happen to work in a rather noisy environment, wear hearing protection. With modern high quality ear muffs, loud noises are eliminated while you can still hear people talking clearly.
- Avoid loud noises as much as you can. If you have to expose yourself to loud noise, wear hearing protection. So when you go to that concert with your favorite band, be sure to use earplugs.
All of these actions will help safeguard your ears. But there’s one more thing you can do to keep your hearing in fighting condition: contact us for a hearing examination. Catching hearing loss before it’s perceptible can be achieved by getting regular tests. You should still have a screening even if your hearing is fine so that you can have a standard to compare against in the future.
Wear Hearing Aids to Keep Your Ears Healthy
We live in a loud world. Despite your best effort to take care of your hearing, you still might eventually notice some hearing loss. You need to seek out help right away if you do notice any symptoms of hearing loss. Some of the age related concerns related to hearing loss can be avoided with a good pair of set aids.
You can perhaps consider hearing aids as a facelift for your ears: something to allow your ears to work a little more youthfully. And dementia, depression, and other problems can be prevented. This example only goes so far since a facelift is cosmetic and hearing aids are essential. You may look younger if you use wrinkle cream. But if you actually want to fight aging and feel somewhat more youthful, your best bet is to protect your hearing and deal with your hearing loss.