Fireworks, concerts and sporting events all come with a risk for hearing loss, including:
- Permanent hearing loss: The loss of hearing that is never restored.
- Temporary hearing loss: Noise-induced hearing loss that typically lasts for less than a day.
- Tinnitus: A ringing, buzzing or humming in the ears that may occur suddenly or gradually.
CELEBRATE SAFELY ON THE FOURTH
Hearing loss can occur with exposure to noise measuring 85 decibels (dB). Although they beautifully splash the night sky with bursts of color, fireworks can reach sound levels of between 150 to 175 dB. The World Health Organization states adults should not be exposed to fireworks louder than 140 dB (120 dB for children). Keep infants away from the fireworks entirely, as their tiny ear canals increase the sound pressure entering the ear.
To safely enjoy fireworks, follow these tips:
- Back away: Increase the distance between you and the fireworks to at least 500 feet to minimize the danger of hearing loss.
- Don’t try this at home: You’re likely to be closer to the fireworks if you’re attending a private fireworks display rather than a community show put on by professionals.
- Plug your ears: Purchase earplugs for the adults and older children in your family. Children eight years of age and under should use noise-dampening earmuffs due to their better fit and because earplugs can be a choking hazard.
HEARING AID CARE
Summer conditions can pose special problems for hearing aids, although some preparation and preventative measures can help minimize the damage. Consider the following tips on hearing aid care:
- Don’t sweat it: Perspiration can lead to moisture build-up in your hearing aids. Moisture can damage the device’s microphones and receivers, or cause corrosion of battery contact points. If it’s safe to do so, remove your hearing aids before vigorous physical activity.
- Beat the heat: Hearing aid casings can melt if left in direct sunlight, so store them in the shade if you remove them outdoors. Avoid leaving them in the car to avoid damage the casings and batteries.
- Avoid allergens: Allergens such as pollen, mold and ragweed can clog your hearing aids’ microphone ports, causing the devices to malfunction. Clean them with a dry, soft cloth to remove the contaminants.
For more information on services available at Associates in Hearing HealthCare in Barrington and Marlton, New Jersey, call us at (856) 266-9590.