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Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery

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Preventive Care

Your hearing, like any other part of your health, is something you can protect. There are several steps you can take to prevent hearing loss:

  1. Get a baseline hearing test. Most adults have never had a hearing test. At your next annual physical, consider including a hearing test as part of your routine check-up or visit our outpatient center for an appointment. These screenings are critical for protecting your hearing health, as they provide your audiologist a baseline in the future to measure possible hearing loss.
  2. Wear protective hearing gear. When you are in a noisy environment, it’s a good idea to wear protective hearing gear like ear plugs or special earphones. You can find ear plugs at your local drugstore, or a music supply shop or visit your audiologist for more information. A noisy environment may include:
    • Rock concerts or any type of loud performance
    • Construction site
    • Noisy workplace
    • Airports, train and bus stations
    • Mowing the lawn or using the leaf blower
    • Woodworking
    • Auto racing
    • Hunting or shooting
  3. Monitor the volume on the TV and radio. While you are watching TV or listening to the radio, it’s a good idea to keep the volume at a comfortable level. It should be loud enough that you do not need to strain to hear, but not so loud that when you leave the room, you can still hear it from another part of your home.
  4. Have special molds made for your earphones. If you often listen to music on earphones using a portable music or video device, it’s a good idea to have custom earphone molds made. These are relatively inexpensive custom ear molds that conform to the unique shape of your inner ear. The earphone wires are then attached to those custom ear pieces. You will find the sound truly superior as the custom ear molds will block outside noise, allowing for better quality listening.

    There are a variety of custom earmolds available today. Some are for use with mp3 players, others are designed for musicians and others can be used in many different situations. Your audiologist will help you determine which style best suits your individual lifestyle needs.