Did you know you have a set of sensory hair cells in your inner ear that are responsible for how you hear? The hair cells (Also known as stereocilia) in the inner ear receive sound vibrations from these hair cells, which are rolled up and live inside the cochlea. Unlike the hair on your head, these hair cells do not grow back once they are damaged or die. What many of us don’t realize is that there is a great deal of things that happen that can permanently damage these hair cells, which are actually very delicate.
This is especially true with loud noises. According to the National Institute of Health, “approximately 26 million Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 have some level of hearing loss and as many as 16 percent of teens age 12 to 20 have reported hearing loss that may have been caused by loud noise.” It is recommended by hearing health professionals to limit exposure to noise louder than 85 decibels, you can minimize the permanent damage to the hair cells of the inner ear.
Hearing Loss & How We Process Sound
If you have hearing loss, one ear probably has more hearing loss than the other, but your ears have been partial to different sounds since birth. According to the National Institute of Health, “Scientists have discovered that the left and right ears process sound differently. The right ear responds more to speech and logic while the left ear is more tuned in to music, emotion and intuition. Scientists believe it’s because speech is processed primarily in the left hemisphere of the brain, while music are processed in the right hemisphere.”
This could possibly explain why those with greater hearing loss in the left ear may have trouble understanding emotional issues and conversations, while those who have greater hearing loss in the right ear seem more prone to lose some of their ability to sort details out.
Did you know small changes can go a long way in maintaining better hearing health?
We’ve collected some simple tips to keep your hearing performing at its best as we age. Protect your hearing health by wearing earplugs or earmuffs when engaging in loud activities, such as concerts, operating machinery or attending any event that uses large loudspeakers, etc.
- Turn down the volume when watching TV, listening to the radio or wearing headphones. Did you know that if you listen to headphones at full volume for 5 minutes, you’ve caused permanent hearing damage? Here is a tip: If the person next to you can hear music coming from your headphones, they’re too loud for your ears.
- Give your ears a break. It’s not always the volume that damages hearing – it can be the duration of exposure, too.
- Avoid cotton swabs. Why? Because sticking these small items into your ears can cause wax to build up in the ear canal and actually block sound. You may also run the risk of accidentally injuring your ear drum by going too deep into the canal.
- Get your hearing checked. An annual Hearing Screening check-up can help identify hearing loss early so you can take steps to protect yourself against further hearing loss.
Rhode Island Hearing Loss Help
At Physicians Hearing Solutions, located in Warwick and East Providence, Rhode Island, our Audiologists will access each hearing health patient by collecting a case history in order to obtain specific information related to a patient’s tinnitus symptoms. Our Audiologists and specialized National Board-Certified Hearing Instrument Specialist (NBC-HIS) performs a complete hearing evaluation to show each patient’s exact hearing capabilities. Our specialized hearing health team will also help each patient complete questionnaires and forms in order to determine the level of impact tinnitus is having on each patient’s quality of life. Because tinnitus can occur in one or both ears, as well as at differing intensities, it is vital to collect as much patient experience information as possible in order to create a viable resolution.
We want you to know you can trust that you are getting the highest quality hearing healthcare each time you come to see us. Our goal is to improve your quality of life through providing you with the quality hearing healthcare you deserve. We offer complimentary complete Diagnostic Hearing Screenings. Please don’t wait, call today, (401) 921-0181 Warwick, Rhode Island office, (401) 435-5355 East Providence, Rhode Island office.