Everybody wants to stay youthful for as long as possible. From wrinkle creams to Botox to special diets to spin class, we spend countless hours each day doing what we can to slow the steady march of aging. And yet, even with all that energy (and all those hours), the one thing that may actually work, we tend to avoid: safeguarding our ears.
Hearing impairment is often one of those “signs of aging” that we frequently think of as inevitable. But it’s not as simple as that. By safeguarding your ears (and treating them with a bit of kindness along the way), you can help avoid damage and keep your hearing in great shape. And as the years go on, strong hearing can have significant anti-aging benefits.
Aging And Hearing
When we discuss “aging” we don’t normally mean the actual passage of time. Rather, “aging” generally refers to the appearance of certain emotional, mental, or physical attributes that we associate with aging. A great example of this is joint pain. You may relate sore knees, for example, with “getting old”. But it’s not age alone that causes the issue (your everyday 5-mile run could have something to do with it, too).
The same goes for many types of hearing loss. There’s a build-up of damage as you get older. And in most cases, it’s the accumulation of damage that causes the actual hearing degeneration. And that’s when things can begin to grow out of control. A number of other signs of aging have been associated with hearing loss:
- Sometimes, issues like insomnia and memory loss, can be initiated by the mental strain of attempting to hear. And, in a particularly intense way, that can cause you to feel like you are getting old.
- The onset of mental problems, including dementia, can often be hastened by neglected or undetected hearing loss.
- Self isolation from friends and family can be the consequence of untreated hearing loss.
- Research has shown a robust connection between untreated hearing loss, depression, and anxiety.
What to do About Age Related Hearing Loss
When you combat the “signs of aging” in your ears, you’re really placing an emphasis on preventing damage. And luckily, there are a few ways to achieve that. Here are some things you can do:
- Increase your awareness. You can still have damage to your hearing even if sounds aren’t painfully loud. Moderate noise for longer durations can cause injury to your ears, too.
- Steer clear of loud noises as much as possible. If you need to expose yourself to loud noise, use hearing protection. So when you go see that concert with your favorite musician, be certain to wear earplugs.
- Wear ear protection to work if your job exposes you to loud noise. With modern high quality ear muffs, loud noises are filtered out while voices are still able to be heard with clarity.
Your ears can be safeguarded by all of these steps. But in order to keep your hearing in good condition you can do one more thing: come see us for a hearing examination. Catching hearing loss before you even notice it can be achieved by getting regular tests. You should still have a screening even if your hearing is normal so that you can have a standard to compare against in the future.
Keep Your Hearing Healthy With Hearing Aids
The world we live in can be boisterous. Even with your best effort to protect your hearing, you still may eventually detect some hearing loss. You need to seek out help right away if you do notice any symptoms of hearing loss. A good pair of hearing aids can help counter some of the so-called age-related problems related to hearing impairments.
Hearing aids can help your ears function more youthfully, sort of like a facelift for your ears. And that can help keep depression, dementia, and other problems from increasing. This analogy only goes so far since a facelift is cosmetic and hearing aids are essential. Wrinkle creams could help you look younger. But if you really want to battle aging and feel a bit more youthful, your best bet is to safeguard your ears and treat your hearing loss.